Before the COVID-19 pandemic, mental health challenges were the leading cause of disability and poor life outcomes for young people. In late 2021, the U.S. Surgeon General and a coalition of the nation’s leading experts in pediatric health declared a national emergency in child and adolescent mental health.
Investing in the next generation and their readiness to learn, be resilient and balance their mental and emotional well-being will be critical.
Out of 1,516 teens surveyed:
- 75% say a mental health stigma still exists.
- They are 3x more likely to feel more peer pressure to hide their feelings than to drink or do drugs.
- 40% of teens give themselves a grade of 'C' of below for wellbeing during COVID.
- 45% have experienced excessive stress.
75% of teens worry about the future of the planet.
88% of teens feel stressed about the future of the planet.
66% of teens agree, “After I spend time outside, I feel less stressed.”
How 4-H is Making an Impact
Kids need steady and ongoing support, a place to belong and a safe, positive environment. The 4-H experience delivers exactly that for millions of kids. Through local programs, activities and experiences, 4-H provides young people a safe space to let their voices be heard and empowers them to create positive outcomes for themselves and their communities around mental health.
Using a positive youth development model, Cooperative Extension provides and builds relationships, environments and experiences where every child feels a sense of belonging. Young people in 4-H are guided by mentors and empowered to find their spark and purpose that leads to increased opportunity and achievement.
National 4-H Council Programs and Experiences
CLOVER Activities on Emotional Wellness
CLOVER offers a wide variety of educational and practical activities to help youth learn healthy habits for improved emotional wellness, including stress management, goals setting, and more.
To find out how you can make an impact with 4-H, please fill out this form or contact Heather Elliott, Chief Development Officer, at 301-792-1023 or helliott@4-H.org.