I didn’t come up with the title of this article. It’s actually the name of the campaign launched by actress, singer, producer, entrepreneur and philanthropist Selena Gomez last May, which was mental awareness month. Her beauty brand, Rare Beauty, released a campaign centered around the idea: “What if mental health was taught in school?”
“Mental Health is personal for me. Figuring out how to manage my own mental health hasn’t always been easy, but it’s something I am constantly working on. I hope I can help others work on it, too. I wish more people talked about mental health when I was younger, so I could have learned and understood what was going on with my own health earlier on”, wrote Selena in the presentation of this initiative.
The statics, provided by a Rare Beauty research, are deeply concerning:
❖ Suicide is the second leading cause of death in the Gen Z community (the generation reaching adulthood in the second decade of the 21st century according to the Oxford Dictionary)
❖ One-half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of 14; three-quarters by the age of 24.
❖ Only 16% of all children receive mental health assistance in school environments where they spend the majority of their waking hours.
❖ In recent years, only 1.3% of overall philanthropic investments went to support mental health.
What can we do to address this ever growing problem? Rare Beauty has a key answer: offer mental health services in schools, the same way subjects like Maths, Science, History or Physical Education (PE) are. Hence this petition, created to bring awareness to the cause and make the philanthropy community prioritize the issue: “Your signature will show them just how urgent this issue is” emphasizes Selena Gomez.
“At Rare Beauty, we believe that learning about mental health is just as important as any other subject in school. That’s why, in honor of Mental Awareness Month, we’re launching the Mental Health 101 campaign. Mental Health 101 advocates for more mental health in education, empowers our community and encourages financial support for more mental health services in education settings” states the brand in the press release of this project.
In challenging times like those we are facing today, it’s more urgent than ever to raise funds to increase access to mental health services such as social and emotional learning, mental health trainings for educators and school professionals, and suicide prevention and crisis response services.
Selena Gomez urges everyone to embrace this cause, that simply can’t afford to wait: “I hope by sharing my own story and using my brand and platform to talk about mental health, I can encourage others to get the help they need, and make sure they have access to more mental health services”.
Like Rare Beauty states, I believe national and local government alone won’t solve the mental health crisis that the world faces today. It’s up to regular citizens like us to show that we care and that this issue matters in our hearts and minds by signing this campaign, sharing the campaign toolkit or donating to the Rare Impact Fund, if possible. (Rare Beauty will be matching $200,000 of donations)
Rare Beauty aims to live up to the motto of its founder, Selena Gomez ” I think Rare Beauty can be more than a beauty brand—it can make an impact. I want us all to stop comparing ourselves to each other and just start embracing our own uniqueness”.
Rare Impact Mental Health 101 – Stat References
❖ Suicide is the second leading cause of death in the Gen Z community according to the CDC (as cited in
Business Insider, 2019).
Kiersz, A. Akhtar, A. (2019, October 19). Suicide is Gen Z’s second-leading cause of death, and it’s a worse epidemic than anything millennials faced at that age.
Business Insider: https://www.businessinsider.com/cdc-teenage-gen-z-american-suicide-epidemic
❖ 1 in 5 adults experience a mental illness each year according to results from the National Survey on Drug
Use and Health (as cited by NAMI, 2021) and many say this number will increase by the time COVID-19 is
National Alliance on Mental Illness (2021, March). Mental Health By the Numbers:
❖ Kaiser Family Foundation (2021, February 10). The Implications of COVID-19 for Mental Health and Substance Use:
❖ In a recent report by the American Psychological Association, 7 out of 10 Gen Zers (ages 8-23) were most
likely to report experiencing common symptoms of depression—with pre-teens and teens having the
highest rate of suicide ideations as compared to other age groups, according to the Annual State of
Health in America (as cited in USA Today, 2021).
American Psychological Association (2020, October). Stress in America™ 2020: A National Mental Health Crisis:
❖ Franklin, K. Gerstenhaber, K. (2021, February 7). In COVID’s wake, we need a mandatory health curriculum in schools. USA Today.
❖ One-half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of 14; three-quarters by the age of 24, according
to the National Institute of Mental Health (as cited by the CDC, 2018).
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2018)
Learn About Mental Health. U.S. Department of Health & Human Services:
❖ Only 16% of all children receive mental health assistance in school environments where they spend the
majority of their waking hours, according to research by Clinical Child & Family Psychology Review and
Health Affairs (as cited in USA Today, 2021).
❖ In recent years, only 1.3% of overall philanthropic investments went to support mental health, according
to data from CANDID developed by the Center for High Impact Philanthropy (as cited in Inside
Zimmerman, K. (2020, June 29). Mental Health Needs to Be a Top Priority for Philanthropy. Here’s Why. Inside Philanthropy
Links to learn more:
Rare Impact Go Fund Me: https://www.gofundme.com/f/rareimpactfund
Sign the petition: change.org/mentalhealth101
Mental Health 101 Campaign Page:
Rare Impact Landing Page: https://www.rarebeauty.com/pages/rare-impact
Rare Beauty Social Handles
Facebook: Rare Beauty
LinkedIn: Rare Beauty