YSI 2015- Youth Mental Health

Following on from our achievement last year of going to Dublin and presenting a project on homelessness we have decided this year to look at the issue of suicide and depression in young people in Ireland. This issue affects many young people and it is not talked about enough so we have decided to do our project on it. We are raising money by designing Christmas cards in Art and selling them in order to raise some much needed funds for Console.

Our Project

This project deals specifically with youth depression and suicide (people between ages 15-20)

October/November 2014 – We visited Jigsaw as a whole group, Sarah was one of the main workers there and she gave us information on mental health and told us how Jigsaw supports young people by having the service opened to everyone. We all got wristbands to remember that there is always someone there that we can talk to when we feel down.

What we have done so far…

Designed Christmas cards for Console Galway. 100% of the proceeds from these cards are going to this charity.

What we are working on for now…

Our survey..finishing the last of our cards.

November 2014

Cards finished and distributed to staff within the GRETB, local businesses and services involving our students.

click here to see our cards

We are working on a rap with Jimmy our music teacher every Wednesday, we have put in the lyrics for the rap and we would like to say thanks to Danny Rock and Armantas Ruljevas for their hard work.

We had speakers in such as Cyril Hyland the coordinator of an organisation called Lets get Talking, he is also a psychotherapist who is experienced in counselling and helping young people.

In mid November Roisin Dolan came in from ReachOut and asked us to be a part of a focus group.  They had questions for discussion and showed us 3 video clips about mental health to find out what young people want to see on their website. Of the 3 we preferred one, although it was a cartoon, it seemed to have the strongest message.

December 2015.

As part of our YSI project we had a Natural Buzz Week. We did this on the 15th of December. There were five areas on which we felt we should focus as all of these are shown to have a positive impact on an individuals mental health. These were Connecting, Giving, Exercising, Learning and Relaxing. One of our activities was random acts of kindness. For example, we made cookies for Waterside house, a refuge for women and children. This would fall under the Connecting area.

January 2015

We are now in the last stages of finishing the rap and we already have an idea for the video which will go with it. We are designing a booklet for distribution to other Youthreachs in the country with images and information which we know will aid in contributing to positive metal health. The five areas which these cover are Connecting, Giving, Exercising, Learning and Relaxing.

February 2015

We are making our YSI music video with the help of a team of students from Galway Community College. We are typing up our project report which we will be putting into hubsi.

Update on our Rap

Last Thursday we did our video for our Rap. Two students from the TV and Film course in Galway Community College helped us. We had a really good time as the two students helped direct and film the whole rap. They have now brought it back to college to finish editing it so that we can put it up on Youtube. It was a very exciting day as we all got to play our part.

What is happening now:

In the Art room we are creating cartoon settings representing the five areas needed to “Mind your Mind”: These will be presented in the form of a booklet.






In our booklet Youthreach students are represented by a tiger. We have a Super Hero in the guise of a ‘Duckie’. In times of stress the Youthreach student, as represented by the tiger, is guided by our Superhero ‘Duckie’ to engage in all, or some, of the activities in an active effort to “Mind your Mind” in a natural mindful way. With ‘Duckies’ help and advice we can see that there are alternatives to drink or drugs in an effort to change or improve your mood.

‘Duckie’ says ‘getting these natural highs regularly will help in improving motivation and positivity. The release of endorphins in our brains is what causes a natural high state. Drugs try to replicate this in different ways and although drugs can take you very high they are addictive and not safe. These natural highs on the other hand are much safer and can still help you beat the stress and anxiety of daily life’.

In the Textiles room we have been creating masks, mascots and our Super Hero ‘Duckie’. It really is an exciting time for all of us involved in the Mind your Mind YSI 2015 project.

Relaxation Room

We have redesigned a room in our centre to become a relaxation room. We spent quite some time thinking of colours and themes. We designed mood boards, chose colours and images to suit and we will be painting this room over our mid-term break. This will be a room that all our students can use for relaxation once they come back from Work Experience which they are doing over the mid-term.


We now have our RAP completed click Play on the video below to “Mind your Mind”.

A week to go!

We are getting really excited, on Thursday 5th March we will be in the Royal Theatre Castlebar at our Speakout. So, are we ready? Well, we have finished our relaxation room, it is now a very relaxing green with lovely posters and bean bags. We have our music video and RAP completed. Our booklet is in its final stages and we have uploaded pictures and some of our project on the YSI hubsi. We will be practicing our 2 minute presentation over the next few days and then we are ready to shout out our message – “Mind your Mind”!

booklet 2 almost finished 1


Speakout 2015- Royal Theatre Castlebar


May 6th

We travelled to City West to present our project..more to follow..


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