By Chaplain Prof. Mike-Jacobs JP, AP, CPC, CCE

The hope of the entire people of the world for a better, peaceful, and more beneficial future rests squarely upon the youths who are considered to be the future leaders.

It is also a known fact that today serves as a preparation for tomorrow or the future. If people’s aspiration for a better, peaceful, and more profitable future must become a reality; the youths must of necessity be prepared today (now) for this future assignment and responsibility of theirs.

I am convinced beyond reasonable doubts that ensuring that youths are of sound mind, spirits, and good health will in no small measure assist them in fulfilling their obligations of giving our world better leading and leadership in the nearest future.

Who are Youths?

Youths are vibrant and energetic human beings of male and female genders between the ages of 16-35 years, in accordance with African youth charter and declaration.

These youths are usually in their productive ages, always willing to venture into things but lack needed experience.

The youths in our world today by current demographic figures available to us, numbered close to 2 billion people, which is between 24-25% of the entire world population.

By this figure, we know we have a huge teaming youth population, who if well directed, can channel their endeavours towards purposeful, profitable, and beneficial ventures for the advancements and betterment of the world.

Vulnerability: The youths are a highly vulnerable group of people, who can easily be misguided to venture into criminal activities that could destroy them and their future.

I wish to commend the visionary leader of GYMHA for considering the teaming youths for sound mind, spirit, and mental health that will make them meet with the world’s expectations of them.

World Foundation for Mental health must also be commended for this year’s World Mental Health celebration and the theme for this year AD2021, which is “Mental health in an Unequal World.”

An Unequal World: Although we have only one known world on the planet earth; this only world presents many inequalities. These inequalities come in the form of:

  1. Unequal opportunities
  2. Unequal social status
  3. Unequal financial and economic status
  4. Unequal health status
  5. Unequal literacy and education status, etc.

These inequalities make mental health care profession difficult, yet mandatory for mental health professionals to care for all people in different situations.

Who are Mental Health Providers? Mental health service providers are mental health professionals who offer mental health care to people who are traumatized, victimized, and people with mental health disorders. These mental health service providers may be:

  1. Mental health counsellors
  2. Mental health psychologists
  3. Mental health chaplains
  4. Mental health nurses
  5. Mental health doctors.

Mental health professionals are found in various health care professions to help people deal with any mental health challenges and problems they may have due to traumatic events, crisis or other challenges of life that push them off balance. These professionals help others to regain balance in life and resilience after traumatic experiences.

Geographical Spread: Although youths have a global spread, they are more concentrated in developing nations, which are poverty stricken nations of the world. As efforts are being made to make provision of good mind, spirit, and mental health available to them; they should also be empowered economically and financially to enable them take responsibility for their livelihood without depending on political elites who will make use of them for their selfish ends and dump them later.

Government of nations also should provide good governance and government of inclusion, which will make youth restiveness minimal coupled with equitable justice.

Youths are usually ready instrument of violence; to ensure peaceful co-existence and profitable and sustainable development in nations of the world. Youths must be properly guided by older adults.