The Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation (ASPF) has launched a new video competition initiative that aims to improve the experiences young people encounter online, at school or with friends and family, placing a strong emphasis on anti-bullying and negativity.
Supported by triple j’s Ben and Liam, the competition will give secondary and tertiary students the opportunity to create videos, with the theme “You are not alone” in mind, to show support to loved ones who may be suffering.
“We’ll continue working with organisations like the Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation to make sure young people know they’re not alone and that there is always hope,” Minister for Mental Health, the Hon. Martin Foley said.
Those who enter will be in the running to win from a $15,000 prize pool, with the competition running from 16 July to 9 October. The iniative has launched at a crucial time – youth suicide has reached a ten-year high in Australia according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, responsible for the taking of 8 young lives a week.
“The online world can be such a damaging place when you’re a teenager and trying to find your identity amidst self-doubt and the struggles of fitting in. We believe these videos will shine a light in the darkness, and provide hope”, said ambassador Liam Stapleton, who noted the issue was especially close to his and fellow co-host’s heart.
“The ‘You are not alone’ campaign is extremely important; those four words can save lives. I have loved ones who battle with mental health issues daily. I’ve been lucky enough to have people around me who I trust and I can talk to,” said Liam.
Ben added, “In my time working in radio I have meet dozens of people who tell me they suffer from mental health issues but hearing a familiar voice in the mornings makes them feel like they have someone and they aren’t so alone.”
For more information on how to enter head to the “You Are Not Alone” official website.