Uncategorized — 18 July 2014

Young people in Western Sydney want to be given skills to help their friends when they see them feeling down.

With suicide killing more young people a year than road ­accidents, mental health is a big issue, yet many youths still don’t know where to seek help.bigstock_All_Excited_251062

In Sydney’s west, getting the message through can also be difficult because people come from such a range of diverse backgrounds.

The What’s Up West? DIY Reality Report released last week highlighted mental health as a key issue for young people in the region.

Giving young people basic skills to help their peers could be one way to tackle the problem, What’s Up West? participant Buddha Huynh said.

“(It would be about) giving them tools to help their friends find help and take away that stigma,” he said. “Because a lot of young people have a hard time talking to authority figures.”

Recommendations in the report include NSW Department of Health awareness campaigns on how to access mental-health services and ensuring all schools develop and implement a policy around the issue.

Another program participant, Sean Ly, said there were issues specific to western Sydney when it came to getting the message through because it was such a multicultural area.

This article first appeared on ‘The Daily Telegraph’ on 16 July 2014.

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