Website to tackle youth depression

The Press 03 December 2007
Youth depression is the target of a new website launched by the Ministry of Health. The interactive website,www.thelowdown.co.nz, has been created to help young New Zealanders understand and recover from depression. …The website is part of the Ministry of Health’s national depression initiative (NDI), which aims to reduce the impact of depression on the lives of New Zealanders. The initiative was launched in October last year, and has included television commercials featuring John Kirwan talking about his personal experience of depression, and encouraging people to seek help. To date, over 25,000 calls have been made to the Depression Helpline. Research shows that young people are less likely to respond to these commercials by seeking help than adults. They tend not to visit GPs and are less likely to use helplines, preferring to get support from other sources such as their friends, family, the Internet, magazines and school counsellors. The site was developed and designed in consultation with youth, and includes online support services.

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