health

UNICEF: Battered by pandemic, kids need mental health help

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By JOHN LEICESTER

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I was heartened to read certain additional excerpts from the full report, that relate particularly to engaging parents, caregivers, and the family, and how important the dynamics are to children:

Parenting is crucial to laying strong foundations for children’s mental health, but many parents need more support. When we ignore the mental health of children, we undercut their capacity to learn, work, build meaningful relationships and contribute to the world. When we ignore the mental health of parents and caregivers, we fail to support them to nurture and care for their children to the best of their ability. And when we ignore mental health issues in our societies, we close off conversation, reinforce stigma and prevent children and caregivers from seeking the help they need. Interventions across a range of systems and sectors – including in families, communities and schools, and through social protection – can help to promote and protect mental health

The full report and additional data and resources are available here: https://www.unicef.org/reports/state-worlds-children-2021 .

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I would like to repeat an anecdote.

My mom, as a small girl, lived through and remembered vividly the pandemic of 1918-1920. I know this because she told me, repeatedly, stories about the horrible, horrible things she witnessed. At a young age I realized that she had been very strongly affected by what she had seen, and I think she suffered from some form of PTSD.

So, yes, we need to be aware that the young people may be especially mentally affected by this pandemic.

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