If you’re reading this, you probably already know that the status quo in mental health can’t continue.
Whether you’re a researcher, a mental health professional, someone with experience of mental illness or you simply care about mental health, I think there’s a good chance you already understand that urgent change is needed – and that treatments and support available for people with mental health conditions are currently nowhere near good enough.
If I’m right, I hope you’ll swear to join us as we launch a major new programme to transform our understanding of mental health – and to transform the future for young people with mental health conditions.
On average, around three children in every classroom live with a diagnosable mental health condition.
Most will have to wait years for help – the average time between a young person first experiencing symptoms and first getting support is a decade. Even when they do see a professional, only a quarter will get care that’s appropriate for their age and condition.
Now re-read those last two paragraphs imagining they refer to a different health problem – like a breathing condition or a kidney issue. Not easy is it? Treatment like that would be seen as a scandal – and yet it continues to be the norm for mental health.
As a result, millions of young people in the UK struggle every day with the confusion, fear and isolation that an unaddressed mental health condition can bring.
For too long, research in mental health has been under-funded and under-prioritised – but with your support we will create a very different future.
At MQ, we’re determined to tackle mental illness where it begins – and 75% of mental illnesses start before people are 18, with consequences that are often lifelong. The only way to deliver a genuine breakthrough is through research.
Advances that were once unimaginable in other areas of health have been made possible by targeted research. So we’re launching a major new research programme, bringing together world-class scientists and clinicians with people with experience of mental health problems to focus on:
- How mental illness develops
- Which young people are most at risk
- Treatments designed specifically for young people.
We’re working with new partners to make this possible. We’re developing networks to realise our vision. And we plan to raise millions of pounds through public campaigning to help fund this urgent work.
We swear to transform mental health for young people.
Will you swear to help?
This is an ambitious programme of work, and we are utterly committed to redefining what it means to live with mental illness.
But to ensure our new research programme has the biggest possible impact on young people’s lives, we need to build a movement to make sure this work gets noticed. So we’re asking you to join us – and swear your support.
Swear to demand more funding for mental health research. Swear to ask everyone you know to join us. Swear to donate and inspire new discoveries. Swear to support this vital work however you choose.
Together, we really can transform mental health for the next generation.
Last updated: 10 October 2016