At Accelerate Estonia, Clanbeat aims to prepare for a qualitative leap in promoting mental health and preventing problems among youth. Prevention is essential to maintain the health of our society – allowing youth mental health problems to escalate has a very high cost for the society.
In May and early June, Clanbeat carried out a pilot project in the Accelerate Estonia program, during which 11-16-year-old students evaluated their own mental well-being three times. More than 50 schools in all over Estonia joined the project (more than 10% of the total), together with more than 4300 students.
Every self-assessment began with an introductory video, one of which was by the President of Estonia Alar Karis, for whom the issues of young people’s mental health are very close to his heart. We believe that this will bring even more attention and positive developments to the field.
The mental health of our youth is concerning:
- The average well-being index of students was 58% out of 100.
- Ca 35% of students estimate that their mental well-being has been low over the past two weeks.
- Girls aged 14-16 and those who have marked their gender as “other” or have not wanted to express their gender have rated their well-being the lowest.
The goal of the Clanbeat team is to create a sustainable solution which students can use to map their state of mental well-being, and based on the results, students themselves and the stakeholders around them (parents, school, local government, state and organizations supporting youth mental health) can find appropriate opportunities to provide support. With a systemic focus on well-being, necessary interventions to promote mental health can be taken in a timely manner and their impact can be measured.
Adults – we all have the opportunity to support young people
The Clanbeat project team has a message for all adults – each of us can do something for the mental health of young people: ask open-ended questions about the well-being of young people close to them and truly listen, express a supportive attitude, lead by example, and encourage young people to exercise and eat healthily.
It is also important to let young people know that if their well-being suffers, they are by no means alone. Together, we can promote talking to a trusted adult, whether they are from their family, school, hobbies or counselors.
Mental health first aid contacts in Estonia:
Peaasi.ee and Lasteabi.ee chat
Lasteabi 24h helpline 116 111