Youth engagement is all about empowering youth, and making them valued partners in addressing and making decisions about things that affects them. It is adults working with youth to create opportunities for young people to contribute and be involved in improving the community, organization, or system in which they are involved. In the New Mentality, it is also about valuing youth with lived experience as experts in their own mental health journey, and as people who have important wisdom to contribute.
Youth Engagement in Mental Health
The New Mentality specializes in engaging youth with mental illness. To do this we create radically inclusive spaces with support structures to ensure youth can speak openly and safely about their experiences.
Although there is no magic formula, there is an openness and willingness amongst youth, adults and youth-serving organizations to do youth engagement. This is what makes exploring youth engagement such an exciting adventure. Feelings of apprehension are common when something is unfamiliar or when little is known about a topic; but with knowledge and resources, these feelings can be replaced with enthusiasm and a readiness to take action.
To learn more about our youth engagement model and approach, download our youth engagement manual Ready, Set, Engage! A first of its kind report for building and sustaining adult/youth partnership. This guidebook has been used internationally to further the practice of youth engagement on a global scale. We also work directly with organizations to do youth engagement training and support the implementation of youth engagement initiatives. To learn more, go to our Get Involved section.