Coming soon! 3rd YMCA Youth Led Solutions Summit on mental health and wellbeing

Date: 14 September 2021

On World Mental Health Day, Sunday 10 October 2021 (14:00-17:00 CEST), the YMCA Movement presents its Youth Led Solutions Summits on Mental Health and Wellbeing, the third in a series.  Registration is now open.

The Summit will hear from leading voices on the challenges – and best responses – of mental health as well as launching a conversation, entitled ‘the World of Wellbeing’, which is an Open Manifesto for Youth Mental Health and Wellbeing.

The Summit will also introduce participants to My Wellbeing, a digital tool prototype that promises to help the World YMCA explore the future of human expression and youth mental health and wellbeing in an increasingly complex world – a world in which digitization promises simplicity, but where the future is still human.

Final speaker names will be announced by 28 September.

“Good mental health was enough of a challenge for young people before Covid”, says World YMCA Secretary General Carlos Sanvee, “with the pressure of jobs, and of keeping up in a fast-moving and often lonely society. But since Covid, we’ve seen an alarming rise in mental health issues among young people.

“This Summit will be transparent about those challenges, and about the brilliant ways that people cope, and how they help each other. The world over, the YMCA puts mental wellbeing on a par with physical wellbeing, as key to a holistic wellness of body, mind and spirit.  That’s why we’re encouraging and empowering young people to learn, connect and be inspired to keep their own wellbeing, and the wellbeing of the world, front and centre.”

Watch the introductory video here.



The Summit builds on a series of global ‘Reimagine’ workshops run by Y Australia from late 2020 to early 2021.  Teams from 15 National YMCAs worldwide – from France to Kenya, from Mexico to Bangladesh – explored how the YMCA can revolutionize its approach to mental health and wellbeing, and become the world’s leading advocate for young people globally.

Two of the Reimagine workshop findings will be presented at the Summit:

  • A Mental Health & Wellbeing Charter and Toolbox, to help support youth workers design and deliver programmes using a common approach and language to mental health and wellbeing
  • A digital tool providing an online referral/clinical support system that helps connect young people to the support they need.

Jan Owen, a ‘Lab Champion’ and Co-Founder of AdaptabilityQ, commented: “the new ‘My Wellbeing’ digital tool and ‘World of Wellbeing’ Manifesto will help young people create a space to refocus their energy on their own mental health and wellbeing”.


The first YMCA Youth Led Solutions Summit, in October 2020, focussed on climate action, and the second, in June 2021, focussed on the future of work.  The first launched some 35 youth led solution climate action projects worldwide, and the second will announce some 30 projects – as young people respond to the employment challenges in their own communities – in October.


Register now at the YMCA Youth Led Solutions mental health and wellbeing summit webpage, and use the hashtag #YMCAYouthLedSolutons.