- Reece Parkinson, Mikaela Loach, Louis Hopgood, Ben Pechey and Grace Mouat will share their mental health struggles during the exam results period
- School-related mental health issues surged during the pandemic: +246.4%
- Stress and anxiety among young people increased by 53%
London, 3 August 2020 – Five of the UK’s best known Instagram influencers have joined forces with Kooth, the UK’s largest digital mental health support platform for children and young people, to launch the #PositiveFutures campaign from 10 to 20 August, ahead of exam results fortnight. At a time when discussion around mental health is high, this campaign encourages the hundreds of thousands students waiting to receive their exam results, to stay mentally strong and know they have access to support, if needed.
To help get this vital message across, Kooth have partnered with five leading social media stars: BBC Radio 1Xtra Talks host Reece Parkinson, sustainable living ethical fashion blogger Mikaela Loach currently studying medicine at Edinburgh University, model and soon to be student Louis Hopgood (@louishopgood_), freelance writer and LGBTQ+ Activist Ben Pechey (benpechey) and West End performer Grace Mouat. The five influencers will be sharing their mental health stories, personal experiences and tips for surviving and thriving during this stressful period.
Recent data from Kooth has shown that young people are already experiencing rising levels of anxiety and stress. Levels of presenting issues linked to ‘school/college issues’ rose by 246.4% and levels of anxiety and stress have increased by 53% compared to the previous year. With marks awarded against expected outcomes, grades being standardised by exam boards and Ofqual, the exams regulator, not taking into account rapid improvement made this year, there are fears that the proposed system to grade A-levels and GCSEs could disadvantage BAME students and those from poorer backgrounds.
BBC Radio 1Xtra Talks host Reece Parkinson, said: “It’s a really strange year for many things, but as if getting your results wasn’t stressful enough without a pandemic! It’s a real privilege to be able to share my past experiences, in an effort to hopefully help at a challenging time like now.”
Annie Meharg, Chief Commercial Officer at XenZone, said: “Our mission at Kooth is to reduce the stigma around mental health and provide a welcoming and safe online platform for all young people that need to seek effective support.
“Whilst the negative impact of social media on young peoples’ mental health is well documented, at Kooth we believe it is imperative to work with vibrant, diverse and positive young influencers who are willing to openly talk about mental health and their own experiences to help raise awareness. In these uncertain times, the pressure on young people around exam results and uncertain futures is overbearing and we are really pleased to launch this campaign.”
Follow @Kooth_uk and use #PositiveFutures to follow the campaign on Instagram.
Kooth, accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy and commissioned by the NHS, is available to over five million children and young people from 11-25 years of age.
About XenZone & Kooth
We are the UK’s leading online mental health platform. Our mission is to provide accessible and safe spaces for everyone to achieve better mental health. Our online platform is clinically robust and accredited to provide a range of therapeutic support and interventions. All our services are predicated on easy access to make early intervention and prevention a reality.
Our three services are:
- Kooth: for children and young persons
- Kooth Student: for university students
- Qwell: for adults
Kooth is commissioned in 85% of the NHS’s clinical commissioning group areas across the country. It is a fully safeguarded and pre-moderated community with a library of peer and professional created content, alongside access to experienced online counsellors. There are no thresholds for support and no waiting lists. Currently, Kooth sees over 4,000 logins a day.
Kooth Student is aimed at university students and is commissioned by three UK universities.