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"Celebrating International Youth Day 2014"
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"Celebrating International Youth Day 2014"

Harnoor Gill pic

International Youth Day is a favourite event for Harnoor Gill, 16, a Correspondent from Georgetown, Canada. This year’s IYD includes the theme “Mental Health Matters”, and Harnoor offers readers some ideas for marking the day and celebrating youth.

My favourite day of the year is today. I honestly have been waiting in excitement for it – the celebration of International Youth Day!

This year’s celebration of International Youth Day focuses on Youth and Mental Health. The slogan for the celebration of this wonderful day is that “Mental Health Matters”. My goal for this day is to help people realize that youth with mental conditions are not different from youth without. I would like to promote the issue of efforts that need to be made to ensure that these youth go on to live full and healthy lives free of isolation from others around them.

The United Nations is running a campaign to further raise awareness from the 12th of June to the 12th of August in an effort to reduce what has until now been seen as the ‘shame’ of mental illness. They need youth to help raise awareness with hashtags #MentalHealthMatters and #UN4Youth to raise awareness for youth who are affected by mental health issues.

Mental health has never been a joke and never will be. If you ever see someone being bullied because of a mental health issue, please go out of your way to help him or her. Encourage that individual to speak out and tell their story, because sharing a problem with others always helps to find better solutions. I myself know of a family where one of the children has autism. I understand the hardships and difficulties they have to go through. There is nothing wrong with the child, but he just sees the world from a different perspective. He is able-bodied and active. In fact he enjoys drumming while creating music with his singing. He enjoys sports and likes to greet people, showing his friendship. Remember, autism is not a contagious disease but  a neurological disorder in the brain that allows the individual to act differently. There’s nothing wrong with that at all.

Social media is your best friend on August 12th and I want everyone to encourage his or her friends to celebrate this in an extravagant way. For example  you could be to hold an event to celebrate this day in your community, school, youth club or even workplace. On the idea of the workplace event, you could even encourage your boss to offer a discount price for youth on this day to show your appreciation for them. Let’s spread the message and raise awareness on this issue through social media services such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Photobucket, Myspace and even Linkedin.

This day is all about youth, which includes this writer and many of YourCommonwealth’s readers. Youth range from the ages of 12-24 so if you are out there looking for some fun, why not celebrate the accomplishment of yourself this August 12th? It’s time for you to sit back and relax, and a good opportunity to help others fully appreciate you for the person you are.

It’s time to chillax for a day, and have fun this International Youth Day.

photo credit: Midtown Uni via photopin cc

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About me: I am a student in Georgetown, Canada, and founder of the Peace Welcome Club. I love to volunteer, read, write, and play basketball. I volunteer with local environmental and youth organizations and am dedicated to raising awareness about youth volunteering. My writing has been published in Indo-Canadian Voice, Asian Journal, Times of India, The Independent & Free Press, and in Amazing Kids! Magazine.

https://www.facebook.com/PeaceWelcomeClub

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Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth Youth Programme. Articles are published in a spirit of dialogue, respect and understanding. If you disagree, why not submit a response.
To learn more about becoming a Commonwealth Correspondent please visit: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org/submit-articles/commonwealthcorrespondents/

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