Students Start Petition to Improve Mental Health Awareness
Hundreds of New Zealanders suffer from Mental Health disorders without realizing. In a recent 2016 survey conducted by the Mental Health Foundation, only 3.2% of New Zealanders suffering from Mental Health Disorders felt they had access to good support and information. Mental Health is a topic that is only ever discussed briefly so only a small lining of information is ever received. This causes many to find it impossible to find support or medicine to help overcome their Mental Health Disorders.
Tamina Kolthoff and Jessica Munn recognized this issue when researching social issues for a Sociology exam at Wellington Girls’ College. The two decided to create a petition to be sent out parliament requesting that Mental Health becomes a compulsory topic to be taught in all schools across the nation. When speaking to Tamina Kolthoff on why she had chosen to act on this topic she stated “Mental Health is an issue that I encounter every day whether it is that I see it in my friends, family or myself. I see first-hand how people suffer from Mental Health illnesses and the way it is very difficult to know how to cope with mental health disorders. I also feel Mental Health is overlooked in our society which just makes it all the more difficult for those suffering from Mental Health disorders”.
Tamina and Jessica created the petition just last week and say they have already gained an overwhelming amount of support. The two say “Our ultimate goal is to improve situations for those suffering from mental illnesses by making sure they know where to get support and to ensure that people understand that mental health disorders can be treated”. Tamina continues saying “enforcing this to be taught in all schools across New Zealand will hopefully result in a wider understanding and awareness of Mental Health across the country which in turn will result in a more inclusive and supported society”.
Both students have created both an online and a physical petition in hope to receive a larger range of support. The online petition they hope will be able to be spread across the whole of New Zealand and to more distant supporters, whereas the physical petition will gain more supporters closer to them from family members and friends.
Tamina states that they hope to send the petition to MP Grant Robertson by late August dependant on the number of supporters we have received by this point. “We are so grateful for all the support we have received and to all those helping us push forward by signing our petition” Jessica Munn announced.
Sign their petition today to help improve Mental Health issues in New Zealand. The online petition can be found at (https://www.change.org/p/tamina-kolthoff-make-education-on-mental-health-disorders-compulsory-in school?recruiter=734141111&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition&utm_term=share_for_starters_page).