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Kids Help Phone begins Feel Out Loud campaign

Kids Help Phone of Toronto has begun an initiative called “Feel Out Loud” intended to raise awareness of and funds for youth mental health. The effort seeks to raise $300 million by 2024, beginning with $15 million donations from BMO and Bell. The funds will be used to expand online mental health services for young people, with a focus on anxiety, stress, relationship issues, depression, suicidal thoughts and feelings of isolation.

To begin the campaign, a group of musicians called Artists for Feel Out Loud has released a song called “What I Wouldn't Do (North Star Calling),” which encourages young Canadians to express their emotions in a safe way. The song is accompanied by a video, produced by Peacock Alley Entertainment, which aired on CTV, and the CTV mobile application on March 4. A national advertising campaign also began on March 4, developed by McCann Canada.

“Keeping your feelings in can weigh you down,” said Katherine Hay, president and CEO of Kids Help Phone. “Since we took the first calls in 1989, young people's challenges have become more complex. Still, 75% of young people tell Kids Help Phone something they've never told anyone else before, which lets us know that they trust us. ‘Feel Out Loud’ is about breaking down barriers to mental health services and supports by creating more space for young people to express themselves, feel seen, heard, and have their feelings validated safe from judgement, in the ways that work best for them.”

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