Youth campaign ‘Hey, it’s okay’ for more attention to mental health

It is currently the week of mental health in the Netherlands. Various activities are therefore being organized throughout the country to draw more attention to this subject. The Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS) is also kicking off a new campaign, specifically aimed at young people: ‘Hey, it’s okay’. They also launch the song in collaboration with artists sor and Tabitha It’s okay.

Many young people have mental health problems. A few days ago, UNICEF released the results of a new poll. This showed, among other things, that half of Dutch young people miss attention to mental health in education.

‘It’s okay’ in the fight against mental problems of young people

It’s not always easy for everyone to talk about how you feel. Many young people today feel the pressure to perform. Feeling that you have to live up to the expectations others have of you. “We have to do too much of ourselves,” says State Secretary Maarten van Ooijen of the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS). “More than half of the students experience pressure to perform. This pressure to perform, among other things, causes mental problems for many young people. It’s important to talk to someone you trust if you’re not feeling okay. Such as a friend, your parents or a teacher. What a relief.”

“75 percent of psychological complaints arise before the age of 25. If young people talk to someone close to them sooner or, for example, receive low-threshold digital help with the onset of mental complaints, we can prevent their problems from getting worse,” says Minister Conny Helder (VWS).

Tabitha releases number

Today the VWS, sor and Tabitha launch the new issue It’s okay. They then performed this for the first time during a surprise performance at the ROC TOP in Amsterdam. Like other young people, they sometimes don’t feel okay and they know what pressure to perform can do to you. “I always feel the pressure to surpass myself and keep making new music. But at a certain point you have already made so much that it becomes an increasing challenge. And that gives me quite a performance pressure. I want to encourage young people to talk about their feelings. Otherwise you will bottle everything up, and it will only get worse,” says sor.

Tabitha indicates that no one is perfect. “I often experience pressure before a show because I always expect the best from myself. I notice that I am very irritable and sometimes also insecure. By talking to my environment about it, I calm down again. They then remind me that I can be kinder to myself and be proud of how far I’ve come. I want to give young people the confidence that being perfect does not exist and that it is okay to feel the way you feel.”

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Youth campaign ‘Hey, it’s okay’ for more attention to mental health

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