May 7 is National Child and Youth Mental Health Day in Canada and May 3-9 is Child Mental Health Awareness week for both Countries. This past year has been an incredibly hard year for our children. We have watched with deep sadness as the pandemic has meant significant restrictions for social engagement for our children. Children have been living in isolation, which has led to a rise in mental health challenges for them. While measures to manage the spread of the virus have been important, we cannot ignore that measure taken to eliminate one significant issue has had adverse mental health effects for our children.
As the year progresses and the vaccine roll out continues to allow states and provinces to return to a point where larger gatherings are possible, will this be enough to combat the mental health challenges kids have been facing? Is it as easy as going back to past routines of connection for our youth that will shift the pendulum back?
Let’s take the opportunity to check in with our kids, make sure they are ok. Have they been able to talk about and process all their feelings of the past year? Should they be connected to professional support as they begin to unravel all their feelings of living through a pandemic. This has been a very hard year for our youth. Make sure they feel cared for and supported.
—Becky Jones, Editor