LETsTALK: developing gender sensitive mental health program for young people
The project aims to strengthen the capacity of youth workers in supporting young peoples’ mental health with a focus on gender-sensitive approach to mental health issues.
Grant Agreement Number: KA220-YOU-0B56936D
Funded by: Erasmus+ Duration: 1/11/2021 – 1/11/2023
According to UN’s Policy Brief: COVID-19 and the Need for Action on Mental Health (2020), approximately 70% of mental health services for children and adolescents are disrupted. The impacts of disrupted services are compounded by young people missing out on peer support and some of the biggest moments of their lives due to school closures, cancelled events or postponed exams. Emotional difficulties are also increased by family stress, social isolation, with some facing increased abuse, disrupted education and uncertainty about their futures, occurring at critical points in their emotional development.
All this points to the alarming need to support all those working with young people to gain basic knowledge on mental health of young people, particularly to provide support to recognize when to provide support, call on for the expert support and support of families and other structures in communities. According to the feedback from practice (youth workers) and academic and clinical experts, the gender difference is of particular interest as they described different self-destructive and destructive behaviour among girls and boys and difficulty to be of adequate support. All these issues are much more visible in the pandemic crisis. Another important conclusion from the policy reports in most EU countries is that mental health services are mainly targeted at children and/or grown-ups, while rarely are they tailored to the specific needs of adolescents and young people.
The objective of the project is to strengthen the capacity of youth workers in supporting young peoples’ mental health with focus on gender sensitive approach to mental health issues. The project primarily develops personal and social competences of youth workers to better understand and support children and youth’s mental health with special sensitivity for gender differences, as they seem to be a crucial factor in tailoring the mental health interventions for young people.