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The Elephant in the Room project was made up of a group young people from the Belfast Youth Forum, NI Youth Forum and Youth@clc who came together in 2017 to explore issues connected to mental health and young people.
They carried out research with 1,268 young people of whom 91% said that mental health is a huge issue for young people in NI.
Young people from the Belfast Youth Forum and the NI Youth Forum carried on their work by engaging with many young people at W5.
“The NICCY World Children’s Day event in W5 was a fantastic day from start to finish. To have so many children and young people from schools and communities across the north come together and engage in workshops and activities about their rights was both powerful and insightful. We ran ‘Elephant in the Room’ mental health workshops during the event which saw hundreds of children and young people take part in creating messages about mental health. Children as young as four years old told us things like:
‘Don’t hide your feelings.’
‘Talk to someone’
‘It’s okay to feel sad sometimes’
‘We need adults to help us when we’re sad’
Elephant in the Room will be taking all of the messages children and young people created during the event and presenting them to the Health Committee in Stormont.