boy and woman sitting in a classroom

Pillar spotlights




Photo: Delivering a session to a primary school class
Credit: Isle Listen

Expanding Our Commitment to Youth Mental Wellbeing​

Global – Collaborating with UNICEF to promote mental health and wellbeing among young people

Since 2021, our strategic partnership with UNICEF has allowed us to create significant and transformative impact for young people on a global scale. Fully aligned with UNICEF's core principles, we are working closely to co-create a system-change approach to help raise awareness and promote the mental health and wellbeing of young people and their caregivers.

Together, we support governments through policy and planning, capacity building, as well as engagement with young people and communities to proactively promote and protect youth mental health and wellbeing. Our current strategic partnership (Aug 2021-Aug 2024) focuses on the development of tools and delivery of strategies to help young people enhance their ability to care for their own mental health in Ecuador, Mexico, Colombia, the Maldives, Nepal, Vietnam, and Indonesia. It is vital that this work is tailored to young people’s specific needs, and so our approach actively engages adolescents at all phases of programming and utilizes school, digital and community platforms to reach them.

In addition, our evidence informed global tools have been designed, locally adapted, piloted, and implemented in an additional seven countries that were not in the initial scope of the partnership. These countries are using the resources as part of efforts to promote and protect youth mental health and wellbeing. This demonstrates the instrumental role of our partnership and the widespread recognition of national actors about the need to act and protect young people’s mental wellbeing.

As our program efforts garner growing interest and inspire action by countries and partners around the world, we will answer this global call to action, by scaling up our partnership work to additional countries in mid-2024.

This will allow us to have even greater impact, by extending our efforts to support more young people than ever. Our ambition is to impact the lives of 6-10 million people by 2027.


Accelerating progress in 2023 through private-sector action

The Global Coalition for Youth Mental Health works tirelessly to address the risks and challenges that affect the mental health of children and young people globally – and made significant progress in 2023.

In addition to welcoming new members, the Coalition members stepped up their work raising awareness, tackling stigma, shaping global mental health policies, and securing additional funding for crucial mental health programs. This demonstrates the power and effectiveness of collective efforts.

The first Global Coalition for Youth Mental Health progress report delves into the transformative impact that businesses can have if they step up to address youth mental health globally. Access it here.


Students from Thuc Nghiem Lower Secondary School in Ha Noi (Vietnam) play on the school’s basketball court during an afternoon break.

Copyright: ©UNICEFVietNam\Linh Pham

In 2023, we were pleased to see more actors joining our youth mental wellbeing movement as we continue to strive toward amplifying our efforts in changing attitudes and behaviors. We aim to ensure that mental wellbeing prevention and promotion are not only acknowledged but also prioritized by governments, institutions, caregivers, and young people. As one of the world’s leading contributors to investing in youth mental wellbeing, we are committed to building a global movement – for young people to live life at its full potential, regardless of who and where they are.


Sofyen Khalfaoui

Head of Improving Mental Wellbeing,​ Z Zurich Foundation​

Expanding Our Commitment to Youth Mental Wellbeing​

Leveraging the power of technology to promote youth mental health and wellbeing

Together with the Mental Health Association Hong Kong (MHAHK) and Zurich Hong Kong*, we have developed the Youth Hub which is part of the wider Chill Lab program for youth mental wellbeing The Youth Hub is a unique experiential space where young people can explore and engage with their emotions. This is achieved through leveraging innovative tools: Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and the Human Library.

VR offers an immersive journey into a worlD in which young people encounter stress and anxiety. The session is followed by a discussion between youth and a facilitator on the experience and insights they have gained.

AR utilizes a gamified approach where students complete activities and exercises on tablets, sparking further group discussion among students on their feelings and mental wellbeing.

The Human Library delivers a relevant human counterpart to the technology-oriented approach. Through this, young people hear firsthand accounts from individuals who live with mental health issues such as depression or anxiety and learn about the importance of reaching out to others for support.

The Youth Hub combines technology and the human connection to provide an original, innovative approach to promoting youth mental health and wellbeing. This is integrated into the scholastic component of the program. Every classroom which benefits from the program is invited to the experience the Youth Hub, further enhancing their journey to emotional understanding and positive mental wellbeing.

Zurich employees in Hong Kong have demonstrated a strong enthusiasm in the Youth Hub, taking on the role of pioneers in experiencing and co-creating the youth hub space since early stage of the project.


*Zurich Services Hong Kong Limited.

Harnessing the transformative nature of sports to improve mental wellbeing

Together with Beyond Sport and Zurich North America*

Grant duration: 3 years

Impact ambition: 400,000 people

Head in the Game (HITG) is a program developed by Beyond Sport, Z Zurich Foundation, and Zurich North America to leverage the world of sport to provide support and resources for young people struggling with mental health and wellbeing issues. There is a special emphasis on youth of color, LGBTQ+ youth and girls, who have been shown to be among the most vulnerable.

Designed to destigmatize conversations around mental health and build knowledge and resilience among young people, the program takes a community-level systems-change approach. It also works with parents and caregivers to help increase aeness and understanding. With the specific needs and cwarhallenges of each community always in mind, HITG’s tailor-made interventions include a grant and capacity-building program, a multimedia awareness campaign, and a targeted Learning Community.

More than 2,300 athletics coaches at non-profit and elite organizations will be trained on coaching through a mental wellbeing-lens to better recognize and address mental health issues among youth. HITG aims to harness the power of sport to make a difference for young people, driving sustainable systemic change from the ground up.


*Zurich American Insurance Company

Focusing on early intervention and prevention of mental health issues in young people

Together with Isle Listen** and Zurich Isle of Man***

Grant duration: 2 years

Impact ambition: 45,000 people

Isle Listen’s program is transforming mental health and wellbeing for young people across the Isle of Man. Building on the successful implementation of Phase 1 in our previous three-year grant, we will proudly continue to support them as they expand their work.

The program will continue to provide multi-faceted early intervention and mental-health support for young people through a Listening Service, group work and caregiver support.

Fully supported with clinical evidence and supervision, the delivery of an expanded and consistent program promises to transform the island’s school and health system.


** Isle Listen, is a charitable initiative of MCH Psychological Services, an Isle of Man registered charity

***Zurich Financial Services (Isle of Man) Group Services Limited

A school-wide approach to mental health education

Together with Sir John Kirwan Foundation and Zurich New Zealand****

Grant duration: 6 years in total – renewed in 2023

Impact ambition: 106,000 people

Safeguarding mental health is a major challenge in New Zealand, with high rates of suicide and increasing rates in children as young as 10 years old. The impact of COVID-19, natural disasters, and the rising cost of living have exacerbated the issue. Mitey, a program designed by the Sir John Kirwan Foundation, uses coaches to support primary schools to create an environment of wellbeing together with teaching mental health in an integrated way using age-appropriate content.

In the first few years of our collaboration, 43 schools have become part of the movement, creating a positive impact on 50,625 people so far. This is on par with pre-pandemic projections – an exceptional achievement against a difficult backdrop of external challenges.

We are renewing our support to the Mitey program for a second phase over the next 3.5 years to help scale its impact and enable system-level change.

“Mitey has already demonstrated its positive impact on young children in New Zealand within a very short time. The ability to educate a child on mental wellbeing in a safe environment  like school will provide generational change for  young people in New Zealand on a scale not seen before.”

Linda Griffin,

Head of Brand, Marketing & Corporate Affairs, Zurich Financial Services Australia Limited


****Zurich Financial Services Australia Limited

girl smiling

Chandra’s Story

Chandra lives in Australia. When she entered 8th grade, though she was an outgoing and confident student, inwardly she struggled with insecurities, depression and loneliness.

Eventually, the pressure became too much and she couldn’t pretend anymore. “I just suddenly stopped going to school and stopped trying. It was obvious to school staff that something wasn’t right because they knew what my abilities were,” shares Chandra.

Alongside the usual challenges that teenagers face, Chandra also had to navigate life between two different cultures, having migrated to Australia with her family.

It wasn’t until she joined the Raise mentoring program that she realised she faced challenges. Despite having a different background to Chandra, her mentor understood what she was going through and was always there to listen.

“My mentor offered me a different perspective and empathized with my situation,” says Chandra. “Before I went on the program, I didn’t see myself finishing school, but because of my mentor I did.” Chandra felt listened to and supported in a non-judgemental space, enabling her to come out of her shell and talk through her struggles.

This is the power of showing up.


Nothing in this statement is intended as substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. When experiencing symptoms of depression or anxiety, or suspecting one or both conditions, it is important to seek the help of a qualified healthcare professional. They can provide an accurate diagnosis, offer appropriate treatment options.