Social Action: an active ingredient promoting youth mental health

How Participation in community action can improve the mental health and wellbeing in young people?

In 2019, 74% of young people in the UK believed they could make the world a better place and 53% were engaged in social action. They were activists, volunteers, participants of local campaigns, all seeking to promote positive change on an issue important to a community and to young people themselves. While youth engagement in social action positively impacts communities, it can potentially also be a powerful way to support young people’s mental wellbeing.

This research looks into evidence of how engagement in social action can provide benefits to young people (14 – 25 years old). It raises important insights about the role of community-based organisations and contextual factors on the impact of social action in youth mental wellbeing.

Social action: an active ingredient promoting youth mental health was conducted by People’s Palace Projects do Brasil in partnership with People’s Palace Projects, the Youth Resilience Unit and the Unit for Social and Community Psychiatry, which are all based at Queen Mary University of London.

Published in October 2022.