Article written by Alivia King and Holly Menna, Year 9 students
We had the pleasure of attending the Youth Focus mental note presentation today. As a result we would like to write a report as we found the presentation was more than helpful. Mike was the presenter. He was articulate with his words and captured the attention of the audience members. What we really liked about him specifically was, he talked openly about his personal experience with suicide which made us feel as though we could trust him more because he understands firsthand what that feels like.
The presentation was structured really well. It was short and sharp which helped capture the attention of everyone in the audience. He also included a lot of statistics which were eye-opening and important for us to know and think about. He also broke down male stereotypes about the way society expects men to be tough and feed into toxic masculinity. Which was deemed very helpful considering a lot more guys in the audience were speaking and answering questions which usually in that setting, they make jokes about it and don’t take it seriously at all. Although there was the odd few who were laughing and being disrespectful, he always shut it down and made them realise that it is an important topic that needs to be discussed. It created a safe environment for everyone because it allowed others to speak without being judged.
What we also appreciated was the fact that he was so approachable to talk to when we did have a chat with him after the presentation. He gave off a very comforting vibe which helped us feel less uneasy because sometimes during these types of presentations, it feels like an interrogation.