Last night’s Four Corners entitled ‘There is no 3G in heaven’ was an excellent programme about youth suicide, especially in the City of Casey on the outskirts of Melbourne. If you missed it please take 45 minutes to watch it. You won’t be sorry.
Sophia Think Tank has been delving into the issues surrounding these tragedies and have come to many of the same conclusions that this programme comes to. There are such a wide range of themes but one that is constant is the need to take more seriously the care of people suffering mental health problems. The services need to be high quality, affordable, accessible, respectful, and deeply humane. All of Community needs to sit up and take notice of this. All levels of Government need to fund appropriately, training of mental health providers need to be trained in relational skills as well as psychological intervention, young people need to be consulted so we can find out what sort of care they would best respond to, peer support techniques need to become a part of High School education, and so the list goes on. It’s a whole of community response that is needed because we are all affected and we are all responsible. No ducking allowed!
The Bible tells us to look after Society’s most vulnerable. In the times of Jesus that referred especially to ‘orphans and widows’. Today it includes young people who are suffering mental health issues.
The question then: what can I do about it in my areas of influence?