World Mental Health Day: Hertfordshire students urged to design films to support #JustTalk campaign

PUBLISHED: 07:01 10 October 2019

Zoe Broadhead, from Chancellor's School in Welham Green, was one of last year's winners for the Hertfordshire County Council World Mental Health Day #JustTalk campaign. Picture: Herts county council

Zoe Broadhead, from Chancellor's School in Welham Green, was one of last year's winners for the Hertfordshire County Council World Mental Health Day #JustTalk campaign. Picture: Herts county council

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Schoolchildren are being invited to design storyboards for short films as part of Herts County Council's #JustTalk mental health campaign.

Ryan Kennedy, from Verulam School in St Albans, was one of last year's winners for the Hertfordshire County Council World Mental Health Day #JustTalk campaign. Picture: Herts county councilRyan Kennedy, from Verulam School in St Albans, was one of last year's winners for the Hertfordshire County Council World Mental Health Day #JustTalk campaign. Picture: Herts county council

In honour of World Mental Health Day today, children and young people have been asked to design films on the theme of 'how to cope with exam pressure', to help their peers manage stress as mock exam season approaches.

One of last year's three winners was 14-year-old Zoe Broadhead, who attends Chancellor's School in Brookmans Park and designed a film exploring how to deal with family arguments.

Zoe, from Welham Green, said: "I was really surprised to win the Just Talk competition. I think the Just Talk campaign is a good thing because if people talk about mental health they feel as though their problems are halved."

Another winner was 12-year-old Ryan Kennedy, a pupil at Verulam School in St Albans, whose film focused on how talking can lighten the load when things are getting us down.

A still from Zoe Broadhead's winning film from the Hertfordshire County Council World Mental Health Day #JustTalk campaign. Picture: Herts county councilA still from Zoe Broadhead's winning film from the Hertfordshire County Council World Mental Health Day #JustTalk campaign. Picture: Herts county council

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He said: "I was so happy that my storyboard was chosen to be part of the Just Talk campaign. It was really cool working with a real cameraman and high-quality cameras. It allowed my story to come alive!"

Young people have told the county council that managing exam stress is their number one worry, which has inspired the theme for this year's competition.

Cllr Tim Hutchings, the county council's cabinet member for public health and prevention, said: "The #JustTalk film competition launch coincides with World Mental Health Day on October 10, and is just one of a raft of activities that take place each year as part of the campaign.

A still from Ryan Kennedy's film for the Hertfordshire County Council World Mental Health Day #JustTalk campaign. Picture: Herts county councilA still from Ryan Kennedy's film for the Hertfordshire County Council World Mental Health Day #JustTalk campaign. Picture: Herts county council

"As well as receiving £100, the winners will be given an exciting opportunity to work with a professional filmmaker to turn their storyboards into a short film. The winning films will become an ongoing resource for the campaign to help share important messages and encourage conversations about mental health.

"We are extremely proud of the success of the Just Talk campaign, working with schools throughout the county and a range of partners it has done an enormous amount to raise the profile of mental health issues among young people in Herts."

To enter this year's competition go to justtalkherts.org.

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