A life is lost every 40 seconds to suicide. Suicide is considered as the second leading cause of death among people ages 15-29 said a study by the World Health Organization (WHO). Depression, among other causes, is the predominant cause especially to boys and girls ages 10-19.
The Philippines has its share of the global mental health concern. In 2003, the Dept. of Health (DoH) have found that intentional self-harm is the ninth leading cause of death among Filipinos ages 20-24. In a DoH study with a 327 respondents, results showed that 32 percent demonstrated having experienced mental health problem in their lifetime.
The state of mental health among Filipinos is a silent, yet serious problem according to professionals on mental health. But there is hope and there are available assistance and services offered by the Natasha Gouldbourn Foundation (NGF), a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing depression to light.
Jean Goulbourn, chief executive officer of NGF, said that “we want to counter the suicide rate of one per 40 seconds by offering hope so that those who are in emotional crisis and in need of immediate assistance can have someone they can talk to, someone who understands what they are going through, and who can give them the support they need.”
However, there is a need to increase public awareness about the importance of mental health. Many are likewise unaware that a suicide hotline is also available 24/7 to guide and advice those who are silently suffering, but needs assistance.
In partnership with Globe Telecom, the hotline called HOPELINE has been in operation with numbers 804-HOPE (4673), 0917558HOPE (4673), and 2919 (toll free for TM and Globe).
Video competition campaign
To step up the campaign, the NGF launched “Hope in 40 Seconds Digital Animation Competition”. The effort is being undertaken by NGF in partnership with the Dept. of Health, University of the Philippines Junior Marketing Association (UP JMA) and supported by Globe Telecom.
The 40-seconder animated digital video competition aims to promote mental health and encourage those suffering from it as well as their loved ones to seek guidance from HOPELINE.
Through animated videos which will be distributed using various channels such as social media and movie theatres, NGF would be able to reach out to more people and provide them with proper intervention so they could veer away from negative and escapist behaviors.
“Although there are no official studies yet on how cyberbullying affects mental health, there are already reports of young people taking their own lives due to online pressure and stress. Being a company which is driven by our purpose to transform the Philippines into a digital nation, it is also our duty to protect and educate the people on the impact of technology in their lives, thus, our support for this campaign,” said Fernando Esguerra, Globe Director for Citizenship.
The video campaign has also been taken as a project by the UP JMA, a university-wide student organization of over 300 members. For this semester, the organization embarked on SPARK: The Movement to promote healthy lifestyle and to spread hope among the country’s youth.
The video competition is open to all Filipino citizens currently residing in the Philippines. All entries must be in animated digital video format (FLV, WMV, MOV, AVI, mpeg, mp4) not exceeding 40 seconds including the title and end screens.
It should also incorporate the HOPELINE numbers 804-HOPE (4673), 0917558HOPE (4673), and 2919 (toll free for TM and Globe) as a call to action in the animation. Interested individuals may access the entry application form at https://docs.google.com/forms/
Relevant information such as requirements and mechanics can be requested by sending email to email@example.com, or visit SPARK The Movement by UP JMA at https://www.facebook.com/
The deadline for submission of entry is 5:00 P.M. on August 15, 2016. The finalists will be asked to submit in data file on DVD data format and the announcement of winners is set on September 10, 2016 (Archived News – July 26, 2016)