PCYC NSW shows true GRIT in tackling youth mental health!

A new program, aimed at supporting youth mental health in the Hunter and regional NSW was launched at PCYC Newcastle this week.

The program, a partnership between PCYC NSW and The Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation, is called GRIT (Growth-mindset Resilience Intervention for Teenagers) aims to build mental resilience amoung 12 to 18 year olds.

PCYC NSW CEO Dominic Teakle said that with statistics showing one in four young Australians live with mental illness, and one in three experiences moderate to high levels of psychological distress, initiatives like GRIT were imperative.

“The GRIT program integrates specific mental resilience skills training, with nutrition education, and physical fitness. The GRIT program is being piloted amongst 12 to 18-year-olds in 2021 and has been co-designed with young people and youth mental health matter experts,” he said.

“It will complement the NSW Police Commissioner’s RISEUP strategy to reconnect disengaged youth to family, education, culture, employment and community.” 

To mark its milestone 500th project, Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation has invested $125,000 to support PCYC to launch and pilot GRIT in regional NSW.

“Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation has a long-standing partnership with PCYC in the Newcastle and Hunter area and across regional NSW, in fact, they were one of the first organisations to receive a grant from us 17 years ago, Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation Chair Jennifer Leslie said.

“So, we couldn’t think of a better organisation or program to bestow our 500th funding grant on,” said Jennifer Leslie, Chair of the Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation Board.”

Jennifer added that more funds were needed to make an even bigger impact on improving youth mental health outcomes, encouraging people to take part in PCYC’s Star Jump Challenge.

“It’s a fun and easy way to improve your fitness while helping the Charitable Foundation and PCYC support youth mental health,” Jennifer said. 

“You don’t need to be super fit or a star jump champion to get involved and make a difference – every single star jump and dollar raised will help Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation and PCYC to raise further funds and awareness about this intervention focused youth mental health initiative.” 

Individuals and groups are encouraged to commit to star jumping every day during Youth Week (April 16-24) and into May to raise vital funds for youth mental health.

For more details on the PCYC Star Jump Challenge, how to sign up, and the GRIT pilot program head here.