Anxiety, depression and suicide among young Australians are at epidemic levels. Wells Haslem Mayhew client, Youth Insearch is offering tangible solutions to this mounting problem, empowering young people to deal with underlying emotional barriers, change their mindsets, and break free of their pasts. Account Executive Stav Pisk reports.

One in five adolescents will experience depression by the age of 18.

50 per cent of mental health conditions emerge by age 14.

One in four children are exposed to domestic violence, affecting them in a multitude of ways, including ongoing anxiety and depression, low self-esteem, self-harm, and experiencing trouble forming positive relationships.

Children of mothers experiencing domestic violence have higher rates of social and emotional problems than other children.

Disadvantage and poverty, broken families, bullying, sexual, physical and emotional abuse. These are the serious, traumatic events that young Australians face every day. This trauma, understandably, takes its toll.

The trauma can rear its ugly head in many ways.

Young people can feel alone in their struggles, believing no one understands what they are going through and keeping their feelings to themselves.

They sometimes turn to crime, violence, drug and alcohol abuse, and other self-destructive behaviours.

Young people who are faced with these issues often struggle with education, employment, homelessness, and mental illness.  

Tragically, these struggles can end up in young people ending their lives.

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Suicide is the biggest killer of young Australians – young people are more likely to commit suicide than die in road accidents.

For people in this age group, for every suicide, there are approximately 100 to 200 suicide attempts.

These statistics around youth suicide are devastating. The personal stories of those left behind are harrowing.

When this happens, the national debate around suicide prevention reignites.

The debate quietens down until the next tragedy occurs.

And so, the cycle continues.

Often these discussions are tied into bullying prevention and informing parents or other responsible adults what the warning signs may be. They are told they need to listen, to be more aware, to love them.

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But what if young people are told they need to help one another?

What if the onus is put on young people to check in with their peers?

What if young people are best equipped to give advice and share their stories?

One award-winning organisation is doing just that. That organisation is Youth Insearch.

While there are many organisations, that support young people facing these issues, few are successful at empowering young people to deal with the underlying emotional barriers, changing their mindsets, and ultimately allowing to break free of their pasts.  

Wells Haslem Mayhew has been working with Youth Insearch to raise awareness of its life saving program among government, media, and the general public.

The organisation has helped over 30,000 young people since its beginnings in 1985.

Youth Insearch helps young people from all walks of life, no matter how significant or otherwise their struggles may be.

For some young participants, Youth Insearch is the last resort, stepping in where others have failed.

Youth Insearch tells us one of the top issues their young participants experience is suicidal thoughts.

The method is a proven success – 80 per cent of participants who had attempted suicide before attending the program had not done so since. 65 per cent of those who were feeling suicidal prior to attending the program no longer felt this way.

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Youth Insearch’s unique approach focuses on young people helping one another deal with their trauma. The program is designed and run by young people, for young people.

The young people relate to one another and understand what they are going through, giving advice on how to deal with difficult situations.  

There is a shared feeling of support, respect and most importantly, love.

When participants share their stories of triumph over adversity, they inspire those around them and empower each other to find positive alternatives within themselves.

Organisations like Youth Insearch are few and far between. We are proud to work with Youth Insearch and to highlight the incredible impact the program has on some of Australia’s most vulnerable people.

Youth Insearch is a part pro-bono client.

If you need immediate support, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 for 24-hour crisis support.