high school students: the time is now. let’s get to work!
Calling on mental health advocates to help establish a school culture of caring and support, especially for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ students nationwide
Over the last decade there has been a rise in mental health issues among youth and young adults. This rise has been even more pronounced among Black, Indigenous, and/or people of color (BIPOC) and LGBTQ+ young adults.
BIPOC youth are more likely to be impacted by the pandemic, police violence, and longstanding racial discrimination. Similarly, LGBTQ+ youth are more likely to experience discrimination, a lack of social support, and limited access to appropriate health care, all of which impact mental health. Experts predict that mental health challenges will continue to rise.
right now, we can – and must – prioritize the wellbeing of all students, specifically BIPOC and LGBTQ+ students
Active Minds is calling on mental health advocates to help establish a school culture of caring and support for all students. Through Your Voice is Your Power, students can organize a coalition in your school or start an Active Minds Chapter by using the self-guided resources below.
organize a Your Voice is Your Power coalition at your school.
Your school likely already has many advocates for youth mental health. Rather than working separately to bring awareness to the unique mental health needs of you and your peers, coalitions bring together groups and stakeholders with shared interest and collective action to create long-term change. When people come together with a common goal and shared strategy to work towards that goal, they are much more likely to make headway.
Schools can listen to the collective voices of the Your Voice is Your Power coalition to create lasting change for all students. You can develop a coalition as part of your Active Minds Chapter or as a stand alone coalition, advocating for a school culture of caring and support for all students. The steps and resources below will help you in taking the next step in advocating for mental health awareness in your school:
Ask at least one other student group or club to co-lead this coalition with you. Then, together, contact relevant school administrators, teachers, school staff members, student groups and clubs (e.g., student government, Pride, Gay-Straight Alliance, etc.), and student leaders and invite them to join you in meeting on a regular basis to talk about BIPOC and LGBTQ+ student mental health needs at your school.