Kate Middleton gave a speech about kids’ mental health at the Roe Green Junior School in London. She spoke about the issue which was very close to her heart.
Middleton seeks to break the stigma around mental health, and her foundation ‘Heads Together’ supports programs where people can get help at the right time.
“We know that mental health is an issue for us all – children and parents, young and old, men and women – of all backgrounds and of all circumstances,” she said.
Middleton said that starting a conversation is just that – a start.
She spoke about the significance of intervening early in life.
“I see time and time again that there is so much to be gained from talking of mental health and taking the mental health of our children as seriously as we do their physical health. When we intervene early in life, we help avoid problems that are much more challenging to address in adulthood.”
Challenges of motherhood
She said that it is important to destigmatise mental health for new parents. “Personally, becoming a mother has been such a rewarding and wonderful experience,” she said. However, at times it has also been a huge challenge. Even for me who has support at home that most mothers do not.”
Mentally Healthy Schools Website
Her foundation has funded the Mentally Healthy Schools website. It has brought together mental health experts and charities to build this project. Its aim is to tackle the fact that half of adult mental health problems start before 14.
Depression in India
India is among the countries which is most hit by depression. Over 5 crore Indians suffered from depression in 2015, according to a study conducted by WHO. And over 3 crore others suffered from anxiety disorders, it added.
According to WHO, 322 million people are living with depression worldwide and nearly half of them live in South-East Asia and the Western Pacific Region. About 50 per cent of this 322 million are living in India and China.
The number of people living with depression increased between 2005 and 2015 by 18.4 per cent. India had the highest number of suicides in the world in 2012, according to a 2014 WHO report.
We need more initiatives that work on mental health awareness, specially about kids’ mental health.
Also Read: Postpartum Depression: How To Cope With It