Mental health literacy and Be You

Below you will find information about what mental health literacy is and how Be You can assist in fostering it within learning communities.

Jul 20, 2020

Be You can assist individual educators and whole learning communities to develop mental health literacy.

Mental health literacy is about understanding mental health. 

Mental health literacy

Be You supports educators with three key aspects of mental health literacy - promotion, prevention and early intervention.

Be You increases knowledge about:

  • What mental health is
  • The mental health continuum
  • Risk and protective factors for mental health
  • Educators’ role in supporting children’s mental health
  • Recognising when someone needs extra support for their mental health
  • Providing support within the boundaries of professional roles
  • Where to access support for a child or young person, themselves or another adult, and
  • The importance of self-care.

Through Be You, educators can also develop the skills and confidence necessary to translate mental health literacy into practice.

Reducing stigma

Mental health literacy is a key component of Mentally Healthy Communities. It contributes to making a community a safe place to talk about mental health and to seek help. This is because multiple levels of stigma have been reduced through educators:

  • Learning individually and collectively about mental health
  • Actioning their learning about mental health into everyday practice
  • Working together to create an inclusive environment
  • Having open conversations about mental health
  • Embedding a focus on mental health in policies
  • Promoting the importance of mental health to everyone, everyday.

Children and families

The mental health literacy of educators contributes to the development of children and young people’s mental health literacy and the mental health literacy of families and the wider community.

When understandings about mental health are shared, educators can assist people to achieve their best possible mental health.