Depression and anxiety have become words common in today’s mainstream media and mental health problems are a growing concern. In recent years, there has been a surge in the number of children and young people having a clinically diagnosable mental problem. Recent NHS data showed the number of young patients being treated on hospital wards had risen by 42% in just one year, with thousands of pre-teen children receiving such diagnosis.
Our society seems to have produced a generation of teenagers in which mental health problems are prevalent. Is this the reflection of a generation under pressure from constant social media, fuelling bullying, insecurity and concern about body image?
23-year-old Wouter and 21-year-old Jason both went through hardship, however, after attending Yes We Can Youth Clinics, a globally recognised international treatment centre in the Netherlands, they were able to turn their lives around.
Wouter began smoking marijuana aged 13, his parents divorced and he became a very rebellious child. He left home, dropped out of school and began using cocaine to self-medicate his depression. This went on for four years, until he found Yes We Can Youth Clinics.
‘[Going to the clinic is] one of the best choices I have made in my life. I have been clean for a year now, no alcohol, no drugs. I got a second chance for a better life; I am training to work in addiction care and have a goal in my life again.’ To read a brief interview with Wouter, please click here.
Born female, Jayson always identified as male and was bullied because of it. He felt lonely and misunderstood and decided to quit school. He got involved in an abusive relationship and everything became too much for him; he began to self-harm and started suffering from panic attacks and suicidal thoughts. Before Yes We Can, Jayson said he didn’t know who he was: ‘In the clinic I learned to talk about my feelings and how to deal with my emotions. I can do much more than I think I can and that I should face my challenges. I’ve been able to let go of the questions in my mind. I like to be seen as a man, but I do not want to put myself in boxes of gender or sexuality, I’m just Jayson and I accepted myself as I am.’ To view a short interview with Jayson, please click here.
Founder of Yes We Can Youth Clinics says, ‘One of our key success factors is that we work with universal principles, like the unconditional acceptance of human beings. We don’t judge, don’t punish, yet we don’t shun confrontation either. To make the youngsters self-reliant again, we offer safety, warmth, love and the best therapeutic approach along with a lot of sports. And this really makes the difference. We have to give them a reason why they should change.’
Jan Willem struggled with his own addiction and gambling problems, and going in and out of treatment programmes for almost eight and a half years before finding a method that worked for him. The combination of knowledge from his own experience and the best practices of other clinics is what makes the Yes We Can Youth Clinics treatment method so effective.