Statistics to understand the need

One of the biggest reasons people don't seek help or support when they are struggling with a mental health challenge is because of the stigma and shame associated with it.

  • Santa Barbara County is ranked 18th out of 58 counties in CA for high suicide rates.  [2019]
  • Suicide is 2nd leading cause of death among youth ages 10-24.
  • 20% of all youth, ages 13-18 live with a mental health condition.
  • 90% of individuals who die by suicide had an underlying mental illness.
  • 50% percent of all adults with a mental health illness experienced symptoms by age 14 and 75% emerge by age 24.

A post-COVID-19 national survey conducted by the Harris Poll found [READ FULL REPORT]:

  • 81% of teens say mental health is a significant issue for young people in the U.S.
  • In this stressful climate, 7 in 10 teens have experienced mental health struggles.
  • 55% of teens experienced anxiety, 45% excessive stress, and 43% depression.
  • 61% of teens said the COVID-19 pandemic has increased their feeling of loneliness. • 2020

  • Youth who feel more connected to school are more likely to have a stronger sense of well-being. Data on suicidal ideation among students before the COVID-19 pandemic suggest a relationship to school connectedness. Though research on suicidal ideation since the pandemic began is limited, past research linked social isolation with poor mental health among children and youth. During a time when physical interaction with educators and peers is reduced, child-serving programs become increasingly important as a means to drive social interaction and mental health well-being. Learn more >

  • Every Young Heart and Mind: Schools as Centers of Wellness written by the Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission as recommendations to Governor Newsom. • October 2020 • READ >
  • Weathering the Storms of Mental Disorders and Emotional Disturbances provided by the 2018-19 Santa Barbara County Civil Grand Jury • READ >
JUNE 2020 • READ FULL REPORT • National 4‑H Council commissioned a survey with The Harris Poll to explore teens’ perceptions and experiences around mental health.

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