Foxtel announces two-year, $2.5 million commitment to support community mental wellbeing

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Foxtel today announced a two-year, $2.5 million commitment to raise awareness and support for community mental wellbeing through relationships with Raise Foundation, ReachOut and R U OK?

Foxtel's commitment to providing airtime and engaging in wellbeing programs complements other government and community initiatives to support Australians living healthy, happy lives and experiencing positive mental health and wellbeing. The support provided by Foxtel includes a focus on efforts to improve the long-term mental wellbeing of young people and help them reach their potential, build positive and respectful relationships, and meaningfully contribute to the community.

Foxtel Group Chief Executive Officer Patrick Delany said: "It is clear that a significant and growing number of Australians, particularly young people, need support with their mental wellbeing.

"With the coronavirus pandemic presenting additional mental wellbeing challenges for many Australians, raising awareness and support for in-person and online mental wellbeing initiatives and the fantastic organisations that deliver these services has never been more important.

"Raise do this through early-intervention in school youth mentoring programs that are expanding across Australia; ReachOut is well-established as Australia's leading online mental health organisation for young people, while R U OK? is focussed on suicide prevention through awareness and support from family, friends and workmates.

"Foxtel is proud to be joining with three leading community organisations that are making a real difference to lives throughout Australia," Mr Delany said.

Raise Founder and CEO Vicki Condon said: "Having a trained volunteer mentor to have a heart-to-heart conversation with every week for two school terms makes all the difference for young people who are at risk of disengagement or poor wellbeing. Foxtel's generous support will help Raise recruit the volunteer mentors we need for thousands of young people as we grow to offer our program to every public secondary school in the country."

ReachOut CEO Ashley de Silva said: "ReachOut is the most accessed online mental health service for young people and their parents in Australia, accessed by more than 2 million people each year.

"Over the past four months, with COVID-19 restrictions in place, young people's lives have been profoundly impacted by issues such as study stress, loneliness and concerns about work and money. We've seen a huge increase in demand with more than 275,000 additional people accessing support across ReachOut's youth, parents and schools' services.

"ReachOut is pleased to be working with Foxtel to support us in raising awareness with young people and their parents – it's never been more important to let them know essential mental health support is available right now and can be accessed safely online." Katherine Newton, CEO, R U OK? said the relationship with Foxtel would help R U OK? educate and empower more Australians to navigate an R U OK? Conversation.

"We welcome the generous support of Foxtel, which will connect us with their valued subscribers to remind them of the importance of checking in with mates, family and colleagues.

"R U OK? speaks to the people around someone who is struggling with life. We provide resources and tips so that when they notice changes in someone's mood, routine, appearance or behaviour, they have the knowledge and confidence to start a conversation that could change a life."

Foxtel's focus on supporting mental wellbeing awareness and fundraising began in May 2020 and has already delivered more than $1 million in airtime value for Community Service Announcements produced by Raise, Reach-Out and R U OK? Foxtel's initial commitment to supporting CSA's and mental wellbeing programs runs through 2020 and 2021.