International Youth Day (IYD), observed on 12 August annually since year 2000, is meant to draw attention to youth issues worldwide with a theme announced by the United Nations (UN). International Youth Day’s theme for 2014 is “Youth and Metal Health.”
According to UN, youth with mental health conditions can often experience stigma and discrimination, which in turn can lead to exclusion and/or discourage people from seeking help for fear of being negatively ‘labelled’.
Consequently, IYD observance by the UN agencies this year will be raising awareness on this important topic, as well as highlight the experiences of brave, young individuals who have chosen to speak out about these issues with the objective of overcoming stigma and discrimination to ensure that young people with mental health conditions can lead full and healthy lives free from isolation and unnecessary shame, and openly seek the services and support they need.
IYD was designated by the UN in 1999 with an objective to draw attention to a given set of cultural and legal issues surrounding youth each year. The first IYD was observed on 12 August, 2000. Often, on IYD, concerts, workshops, cultural events, and meetings involving national and local government officials and youth organizations take place around the world.