We are teaming up with youth groups, charities and schools to make young people’s mental health a priority, and we need your help.
The Zen Project aims to make all things zen accessible to all, building a community which fosters resilience and creates calm amongst the chaos.
By sharing tools to help build resilience against the stressors of daily life, we can become better equipped to tackle them head on. The Gen Zen campaign focuses on addressing the wellbeing needs of today's young people, Generation Z (those born between 1997 and 2012). Scroll to the bottom to read more about why we are focusing on Gen Z for this Campaign.
We need to raise £20,000 to fund the Gen Zen tour, bringing Zen to young people in the community in and around london.
The money raised will allow us to take our mobile studio, The Zen Den, to community groups over the course of two months, delivering in-person sessions on useful, quick and effective tools to facilitate zen whenever and wherever it is needed. Through the use of breathwork, guided meditation, and other evidence-backed zen practice, we provide free sessions and practical skills for managing stress and anxiety. These techniques are proven to help break the stress cycle, better equipping individuals in dealing with daily stressors. The space also provides a safe, multifunctional setting for groups to facilitate other activities focused on wellbeing, including arts and crafts and life coaching sessions. Through our partnerships with Centrepoint, Sapphire and the Single Homeless Project, we have been able to share our wide variety of sessions with key groups helping people in need, but we cannot stop there. With your help we can help young people lay the foundations for emotional wellbeing.
Importantly, our campaign not only provides a physical space for community groups to learn and practice zen techniques & self-care, but also initiates conversation specifically about child and adolescent mental health in the right settings. Through our online campaign, we hope to remove the stigma associated with discussing mental health amongst young people and build a community of organisations invested in taking action. Generation Zen are our future, supporting them is essential and we all have a role to play.
Text: To donate £3, text GENZEN to 70331 To donate £5, text GENZEN to 70970 To donate £10, text GENZEN to 70191
17.6% of secondary school-age children reported having a probable mental health disorder in 2020, increasing from 12.6% in 2017(https://minilink.net/OWyAz)
51% of young people feel embarrassed about mental illness(https://minilink.net/A8kSU)
75% of mental illness starts before a child reaches their 18th birthday(https://minilink.net/A8kSU)
75% of young people with mental health issues do not receive treatment(https://minilink.net/A8kSU)
Between the ages 5 and 19, suicide is the most common cause of death for boys and the second most common for girls (https://minilink.net/4XaIs)
The first step towards change is understanding the issues faced by young people today. There is a unique combination of stressors, many specific to this generation, which are having a severe impact on mental health during a crucial transitional period of growth and development. This directly impacts upon academic achievement, employment, physical health and personal relationships, with devastating implications for society as a whole. If we were to look at this economically, poor mental health is estimated to cost England £105 billion a year.
Early evidence suggests that although children and young people have demonstrated surprising resilience during this period, the wellbeing of those who are from households with financial disadvantage or domestic violence, homeless individuals, ethnic minority groups, and differently-abled individuals may be most negatively affected.(https://minilink.net/OWyAz)
It is not yet clear how mental health has suffered as the pandemic has continued. Many households have been put under significant stress both financially and emotionally, with parents having been put under extreme stress; the impact on younger family members will become clear in time.
The education system prioritises academic attainment over mental wellbeing. An ever-increasing focus on academic targets have worsened the stress placed on students to perform without addressing the associated emotional burden.
73% of teachers believe student mental health has worsened since the introduction of the reformed GCSEs. 81% of school leaders worry more about pupils’ mental health during assessment periods than they used to and 79% of school leaders have noticed an increase in stress, anxiety, and panic among their pupils.(https://minilink.net/0th8p)
Young people from households of lower socio-economic status are significantly more at risk of stressful life events, contributing to the development of mental health conditions. Stressful events include financial crisis, parental mental illness, divorce, separation, trouble with the law and loss of employment.
The number of stressful events and the level of parental education are two key factors within the household which significantly impact the emotional wellbeing of a young person.(https://minilink.net/eXerH)
In moderate use, digital technology has been shown to have a positive impact on young people’s wellbeing. However, a clear correlation exists between teenage depression and the dissemination of social media. The impact of online harassment, sleep deprivation, poor self-esteem and negative body image as a result of social media, threatens to have a significant impact on emotional well-being.(https://minilink.net/YxQWi)
Social media is a useful and powerful tool in initiating change and bringing communities together, however the threat it poses to the youth of today, is one not faced by previous generations.