Over the summer months a group of Teens from Thurles were working away on a Film project in the board room of Tipperary Regional Youth service, this group had decided to tackle the issue of youth mental health following the death of a friend from a previous project they had done last Easter.
The group members wanted to make a film to promote positive mental health, to help STAMP OUT STIGMA by talking about your mental health - they want to highlight why youth need to reach out to someone and talk about there problems and not see suicide as a choice when things are bad for them
They hope the project will make a difference to other young people because they want youth to know that your mental health is something to protect and that people will help you if you ask, if we get the message out that youth can be strong and get help and its nothing to be ashamed of if your having a hard time. WE ALL NEED TO TALK.
The group were supported by Tipperary Regional Youth Service workers and have also received a seed grant of €300 from the O2 Think Big campaign for the project. The group have inputs & interviews in the film from Headstrong (Youth mental health), Teenline, local grievance councillor, family member & friends of people affected by suicide. Minister Kathleen Lynch and Paul Walsh of Royseven.
The film premier took place in the Source Arts centre last Thursday during mental health week with family and friends in attendance as well as teachers and people working in the area. Parents baked and the event had a lovely friendly atmosphere while delivering a very important message. Eoin Corbett and Adam O Dwyer (Directors) started the night and as directors explained there reasons behind and hopes for the film. Paul Walsh of Royseven who is an ambassador for Youth Mental Health with O2 Think Big spoke of the importance of the next generation being open and free to talk about how your feeling and to have coping techniques for the days your low like going to the cinema or eating ice-cream, he praised the film and the group members for taking on the topic and he hopes the next generation will make a change to how we view our mental health. The film was then played and its striking message and honesty impacted everyone. The key messages were WE ALL NEED TO TALK, that taking about your mental health or indeed suicide does not put ideas in young people heads, THAT IF EVERYONE HAD ONE ADULT TO TALK THAT IS WOULD BE A VALUALBE COPING TOOL.
Following the film Aoife O Meara did the thank you’s to all involved including people who have made donations to the project, fundraising will continue with a book fair before Christmas. Ursula Curley spoke of what she had learned about mental health during this project and how she had changed for the better because of it. A presentation was made to the youth workers who helped them with this project Pauline, Lisa and Sara. Pauline Strappe of Tipperary Regional Youth Service then spoke of the pride TRYS had in this group on the excellent work and film they had done and how youth mental health is such an important issue for all. She also said the group was an inspiration to work with and hoped using film with youth in this way would be a way to get issues heard in future. Pauline also complimented the group members that attended an evening before in Dublin where at the Community Action on Suicide Film Awards in the Clarion Liffey Valley the film had been shown and Eoin had received an award on its behalf. The evening finished with local youth band Four Foot Nothing who rocked the event with 3 songs. Refreshments were served in the beautiful Gallery.
Well done to all the group – Natalie Kennedy, Grace Dillon, Ruth Atkins, Joseph Learoyd, Aoife O Meara, Adam O Dwyer, Cliona Martin, Aoife Ryan, Ella Heaney, Eimear Nolan, Shane Butler, Peter Carragher, Ursula Curley, Sarah Kelly & Eoin Corbett.
From here the film will be available to download from the website WE ALL NEED TO TALK.COM & it’s hoped will be circulated through social media to reach as many young people as possible. Wristbands are also on sale promoting the film.