Gen Z faces a mental health crisis. Anxiety and depression are at an all-time high. Suicide has risen to alarming levels.
Some dismiss mental health issues as a “snowflake” problem but new evidence shows that it is a complex and often deadly public health emergency. Technology has propelled the rising generation into nervous exhaustion. Economic uncertainty has robbed them of a path to success. COVID-19 and the unraveling of civil society have only added fuel to the fire.
Will the church be on the sidelines as this generation spirals? Gen Z already has the lowest level of church engagement of any generation in American history. Polls show that young adults do not believe that churches–or their parents–have answers.
It is time for believers to rise up and help Gen Z emerge into adulthood with strength and confidence.
Gritty Kids in a Fragile Age: Biblical Thinking about Culture and Mental Health (37:14)
Teens & Mental Health: Hope and Healing for a Struggling Generation (39:27)
In this Together: Teen Suicide Prevention (37:18)
Helping Teens Find Hope: Panel Discussion (30:19)
If you’re tired of avoiding tough conversations, if you want to be a light in a dark world but you’re not sure how Challenging Conversations is the book you’ve been waiting for. With straightforward answers to some of the most challenging moral issues disrupting the church, this book will help you build your confidence using three simple steps to becoming a conversant Christian.
Faye Lyne-Noel, Summit Basecamp Host
The oldest of four, Faye hails from Buffalo, NY (GO BILLS!). She holds a degree in Public Health and is pursuing a career in Nursing.
Dr. Jeff Myers, Youth leadership expert and president of Summit Ministries in Manitou Springs, Colorado
Dr. Jeff Myers is president of Summit Ministries. In the last 20 years Dr. Myers has become one of America’s most respected authorities on youth leadership development. Focus on the Family founder James Dobson referred to him as “a very gifted and inspirational young leader.” Evangelist Josh McDowell called him “a man who is 100% sold out to preparing the next generation to reflect the character of Christ in the culture.” Through his appearances on Fox News and other media programs, Dr. Myers has become a fresh voice offering humor and insight from a Christian worldview.
He holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree and teaches leadership courses through CollegePlus and Belhaven University. Jeff and his family live in Colorado.
Dr. Joannie DeBrito, Licensed mental health professional and Director of Parenting and Youth, Focus on the Family
Dr. Joannie DeBrito is a dually licensed mental health professional with over 30 years of experience providing therapy, conducting prevention and wellness seminars, training and supervising counselors and administering human services programs. As the current Director of Parenting and Youth at Focus on the Family, Joannie combines her special expertise in crisis and trauma counseling and marriage and family therapy to provide engaging content to equip parents to disciple and mentor their children to thrive in Christ. Joannie was a co-developer of Alive to Thrive, a free, online, biblically based suicide prevention and response program for parents, pastors, teachers, coaches and other adult influencers.
David Galvan, Trainer in Adverse Childhood Experiences, Director of Education for a Lifetime
David has been teaching, training and facilitating conversations with students about whole-person health since 2010. During that time, David has been in 24 High Schools in Colorado Springs and has personally spoken to over 20,000 students. His vast amount of experience with students, informed him as he co-producedWho Can Relate which focuses on the issue of teen suicide prevention. He is an engaging and dynamic speaker, who has spoken at numerous parent seminars/workshops around Colorado Springs, in addition to the Springs Mental Health Summit. David is a certified trainer in Youth Mental Health First Aid and has trained over 300 individuals in just over a year, and recently became a trainer in Adverse Childhood Experiences, which focuses on trauma informed care. David is part of the El Paso County Youth Suicide Prevention Workgroup, where he co-chairs the Faith-Based Community subgroup.
Gritty Kids in a Fragile Age—Biblical Thinking About Culture and Mental Health
(Dr. Jeff Myers)
Fragile. That’s the word mental health professionals increasingly use to describe today’s young adults. Anxiety and depression are at record highs. Twenty-five percent of 18-to-24-year-olds have considered suicide within the last 30 days. Boredom, fear, disappointment have taken their toll, especially during the COVID lockdown. With education now being on-line, the trifecta of digital entertainment, friendship, and learning is complete. What we do about it depends on our worldview. Since secularists often approach the problem as purely behavioral or medical, Christians often react by treating it as purely spiritual. To grapple with today’s mental health crisis we need to understand a biblical worldview of humanity—who we are an what we are to do, so that we can care for both our souls and our bodies. Dr. Myers shows how true Christianity reaches deeply into the neuroses of our age to bring true healing.
Teens and Mental Health: Hope and Healing for a Struggling Generation
(Dr. Joannie DeBrito)
The rise in mental health problems among our teens and young adults has been well documented. Approximately one in four young people now struggle with depression and/or anxiety and suicide is the second leading cause of death among those 10-34 years of age. In this presentation, Dr. Joannie DeBrito will discuss some of the reasons for this troubling trend and offer reasons to have hope for reversing it. Parents and others will learn how they can use the power of relationships, personal engagement and wise counsel and guidance to promote spiritual and emotional healing in youth.
In This Together – Teen Suicide Prevention
More than half of the people experiencing a mental health crisis will reach out to their faith communities first (NAMI). With 1 in 5 young adults living with a mental health illness and teen suicide rates at an all-time high, faith communities have an opportunity to meet our students during their crisis; by providing a holistic approach to help, healing, and hope. By engaging in this topic, resourcing training for staff and volunteers and providing additional community resources we can increase our ability to be conduits of care to our community at large. We believe that through faith community partnerships we can provide protective factors for the community at large to combat mental health stigma and suicide, yet how we approach these conversations can directly impact faith-based communities willingness to engage and participate with the topic of mental health. Join us for this conversation as we share what is being done in our community around suicide prevention and mental health, and how you can support efforts to drastically reduce and hopefully eliminate death by suicide among our youth.
Panel Discussion (Dr. Jeff Myers, Dr. Joannie DeBrito, and David Galvan)
*during the Q&A sessions and Panel Discussion, we will be taking questions from both the questions you submitted through the registration form and questions on the Summit Virtual live platform.