Active Minds Releases New Educational Resources to Help People Support a Friend

Tuesday, September 3, 2019 Education News
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In honor of September as Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, Active Minds launched new V-A-R resources including conversation tips, tools and guides to help.

WASHINGTON, Sept. 3, 2019 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- Active Minds, the nation's leading nonprofit organization supporting

mental health awareness and education for young adults, released new educational resources today designed to help people support a friend or loved one who may be struggling.

"Stigma surrounding mental health has dropped dramatically in recent years among young adults," says Laura Horne, Active Minds' Chief Program Officer. "However, we hear from many that they don't always know what to say when a friend says they are stressed, having a difficult day, are in pain, or have a mental health need."

50% of us will experience a mental health issue in our lifetime, and 1 in 5 adults has a diagnosable mental illness. The need for peer support in tough moments is underlined by research showing 67% of young adults first tell a friend they are feeling suicidal before telling anyone else.

In honor of September as Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, Active Minds launched new V-A-R resources including conversation tips, tools and guides to help.

V-A-R is a simple approach to everyday conversations, and includes three easy steps: Validate, Appreciate, and Refer. A conversation using V-A-R is one that openly and actively listens to a friend, and offers means to help them feel heard and supported. The newly released V-A-R guides were developed knowing a conversation could make all the difference for someone suffering, and prevent a crisis from developing later.

"With V-A-R, we hope to make clear that someone doesn't need to be in a crisis to seek help, you don't have to be an expert to provide help, and help can come in many different forms," says Alison Malmon, Executive Director and Founder of Active Minds. "Being there for someone in a moment of need is what it's all about."

The new V-A-R skill-building tools can be found at activeminds.org/VAR.

About Active Minds: Active Minds is the nation's leading nonprofit organization supporting mental health awareness and education for young adults. Powered by a network on more than 800 high school and college campuses, in workplaces and communities, and through a vast public audience, Active Minds is creating communities of support and saving lives.

Active Minds' signature programs include a college and high school chapter program, the acclaimed Send Silence Packing® exhibit, its compelling Active Minds Speakers, and the newly launched Active Minds @ Work initiative. A recent landmark study by the RAND Corporation confirms that Active Minds has a significant, positive impact on student health and well-being by creating a supportive climate for mental health on college campuses.

Media contact:

Margo Collins | Active Minds margo@activeminds.org | 202.332.9595, ext. 109

Angela Gillis | Active Minds angela@activeminds.org | 202.332.9595, ext. 119

 

SOURCE Active Minds



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