The Child Mind Institute (CMI) announced its first-ever #MyYoungerSelf social media campaign, bringing together nearly three dozen actors, professional athletes, fashion designers, authors, politicians, advocates and other influencers who will share personal videos about growing up with a mental health or learning disorder and the advice they would give their younger selves about how to persevere.
Every day in May, Mental Health Awareness Month, a new, homemade video and childhood photo of a celebrity, including Academy Award winner Emma Stone, Olympian Michael Phelps, actors Jesse Eisenberg, Lena Dunham and David Cross, director/producer Brian Grazer and fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger, will be revealed on the Child Mind Institute's social media channels and web site (www.SpeakUpForKids.org). Everyone can get involved by liking and sharing the celebrity videos, accessing resources and sharing their own #MyYoungerSelf stories.
Of the 74.5 million children in the United States, an estimated 17.1 million have or have had a mental health disorder — more than the number of children with cancer, diabetes and AIDS combined. In spite of the magnitude of the problem, lack of awareness and entrenched stigma keep the majority of these young people from getting help. Children and adolescents struggling with these disorders are at risk for academic failure, substance abuse and a clash with the juvenile justice system — all of which come at tremendous cost to them, their families and communities.
"We are grateful to have so many notable figures participating in #MyYoungerSelf and speaking up about such an important topic," said Dr. Harold Koplewicz, Founding President of the Child Mind Institute. "I know that their inspiring stories will help millions of families open up about their own mental health and learning disorders and seek out the help their children deserve."
Other campaign participants include: Nancy Brinker, Rachel Bloom, Tracy Clayton, Paul Dalio, Wayne Brady, Todd Fisher, David Flink, Stephen Fry, Davis Guggenheim, Dan Harris, Hannah Hart, Colton Haynes, Jenny Jaffe, Kay Redfield Jamison, Naomi Judd, Patrick J. Kennedy, Jay Leno, Governor Dannel P. Malloy, Howie Mandell, Brandon Marshall, Daphne Merkin, Marti Noxon, Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom, Keke Palmer, Ty Pennington, Jane Rosenthal, Trudie Styler, Elizabeth Vargas, Ali Wentworth and Henry Winkler.