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Newsletter #40 - New volunteering opportunities; bridging the gap with the elderly; beating peer pressure.

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Posted July 15th 2013 at 11:00 PM by TeenHelp
Updated July 28th 2013 at 04:26 PM by Rob

Source: Newsletter | Issue 40 | If you would like to receive the full quality HTML version via email please sign up.

TeenHelp Newsletter

TeenHelp Newsletter #40 - July 15th 2013 - http://www.teenhelp.org

Welcome to the TeenHelp Newsletter! Our Newsletter contains a lot of useful information about our current work, including updates to our site and services, work with our partners and affiliates, details of upcoming events, short bits of advice, interesting links and more!


TeenHelp News

TeenHelp regularly makes changes to its site and services. Some of these are large and noticeable, and others are small and much less so, but each one contributes to the positive development of TeenHelp and how our users experience our community. Below are some of the most recent developments.


New volunteer opportunity (July 4th 2013)

Each week on Saturdays TeenHelp runs facilitated discussions in our Chat Room on a range of subjects such as how to build your confidence or deal with things that trigger you. We are currently recruiting for a new Chat Mentor volunteer role to deliver these discussions each week. This role is perfect if you're looking to develop your organisational and leadership skills and will give you the chance to help others by supporting them to discover solutions to the issues that face them.



Latest videos (July 3rd 2013)

Due to the hard work of our Videos Team, we continue to see many great additions to our Videos section. More videos are being added all the time, so check regularly to see all our favourite picks! Some of our latest additions include:

Bullying defined

Bullying can manifest itself in many forms, and it can happen to anyone, anywhere. In this video, a Childline Officer explains what bullying is, and gives insight into why people become bullies and why they target individuals. She also goes on to discuss what will happen to the bully after you have told someone, and whether or not you should leave work or school due to bullying.

How to exercise if you are overweight

Overweight people can sometimes find it hard to start exercising, which makes it more challenging for those who wish to lose weight. In this video Dr Jerry Pryde gives expert advice on how one should exercise if they are overweight.

How to find a job after college

The transition from college into the world of work can be daunting and challenging. This video explores the questions that you may need to ask yourself when job hunting, the benefits and drawbacks to consider about each job, and how to find a good company to work for.

How to make carrot cake

Learn how to make a moist and sweet carrot cake by watching this video. This delicious treat to enjoy with friends and family couldn't be any easier to make!



Latest articles (July 1st 2013)

Our team of talented writers bring our users a constant stream of fresh articles to read each month. Articles are being published regularly, so be sure to check regularly to see what we're doing. Some of our latest additions include:

The Lost Boy by Dave Pelzer
In this article, a TeenHelp user discusses Dave Pelzer’s memoir The Lost Boy, a haunting tale of growing up when it seems like the world is out to get you. Although the memoir could be considered triggering, it is worth reading; many people will be able to relate to Dave’s struggles, which range from abuse to anxiety, and the memoir also provides insights into the foster care system and the changing ways in which the issue of child abuse has been dealt with.

Spending time with the elderly
Many people have some contact with the elderly, whether it’s a neighbor, relative, or family friend. However, the age difference can often make it difficult to connect to the elderly, and make people reluctant to reach out to them. This article gives some tips on how to interact with elderly people, as well as explaining the benefits (both to you and the elderly person) of doing so.




TeenHelp works with a range of different organisations and websites in order to help and educate young people. Below is a selection of some of them. For a full list of the organisations we work with, please visit our Resources page.



National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

NINDS is a USA government agency that deals with a wide range of disorders affecting the brain and nervous system. Their website has a database of hundreds of common and less common disorders such as ADHD and cerebral palsy that gives an overview of the disorders, possible treatment options and resources available to help those experiencing the disorder. If you have or think you could have a disorder this website is a great starting place to find out where to look next.



Tips Of The Month

Each month we share small bits of practical advice that you can implement to improve your life or that of others.


How to say ‘no’ to peer pressure

Especially during the teenage years, it can be hard to tell the difference between having friends encourage you to do or try something and having them pressure you to do it. It’s important to know how to tell if you are being peer pressured, and how to avoid giving in to it.
  • First, ask yourself: ‘Do I feel comfortable with this?’ If you don’t, understand that it is your right to say no. It won’t make you uncool or ‘lame’, and if they’re your friends they should respect your decision. Know your limits, know what you’re comfortable with, and be willing to be in the minority if what the majority is doing doesn’t sit right with you.
  • Learn to tell the difference between being encouraged and being pressured. If your peers are encouraging you, they will make you feel safe and at ease – and if you say ‘no’, they’ll respect that and let it go. If, however, they are pressuring you, they might make you feel uncomfortable or upset, and are unlikely to accept ‘no’ as an answer.
  • Be firm but polite. If you make it clear that you aren’t going to change your mind, people will be less likely to pester you about it. Stand by your decision, and don’t let others’ opinions sway you.
  • Be willing to leave the situation, if possible. If you’re at a party, have a parent or guardian pick you up. If you’re sitting with your friends, get up and move away from them. Removing yourself from the situation can make you feel safer and also make it evident that you aren’t going to let them pressure you.


How to make a to-do list

Sometimes it’s less a matter of having enough time and more a problem of how to effectively use the time you have. Here are a few quick tips to help you organise your to-do list for maximum efficiency.
  • Work out which projects are going to take a lot of time, and sort them into two categories: those which will need to be done all at once or within a short amount of time (for example, cleaning the house or painting a room), and those which will need consistent effort over a reasonable period of time (such as a school project or major assignment). This will give you a good starting point.
  • List all of the tasks that need to be done. It can often be helpful to first list these in the order of which you think of them, rather than the order of importance. You can later go back and rearrange these, putting those with the highest priority (for example, ones with deadlines) at the top and those which can wait towards the bottom of the list.
  • Make your to-do list as personalised as you like. If you want to set aside an entire day to accomplish a task, you can organise your list like that. However, you could also separate days into segments and list specific, smaller tasks for each of those. For example, if your task is ‘write an essay’, you could format your to-do list simply as ‘Monday: write essay’, or more detailed, such as ‘Monday: 9-10 – research topic; 10-11 – put points together, 12-1 – write introduction’ and so on.


Making your gap year worthwhile

Many young people decide to take a gap year between school and higher education, or after university before finding a job. While a year out can provide many exciting and worthwhile opportunities, it can sometimes be too easy to let the year slip by without careful planning. Here are some tips to help you get started.
  • Learn new skills. If they relate to your intended career path, then it will enhance your employment prospects, but learning something completely different can be equally worthwhile. It may open up new avenues or enrich your life in other areas.
  • Find a part-time job. This will give you valuable work experience, as well as helping to fund your activities during your gap year, and to finance future expenditures, whether it be at university or otherwise.
  • Volunteer and make a difference in other communities. Not only is this rewarding and will give you a sense of accomplishment, but it also helps to build character and develop your skills.
  • Discover new places, abroad or in your home country. Experiencing different cultures, tasting new foods, trying new activities, stepping out of your comfort zone, and meeting new people can be inspiring and can change your life.
  • Top-up your knowledge with some study, or retake exams if you did not quite make the grade. Keeping your brain sharp will mean that returning to education or starting work will not be such a shock.


Interesting Things (on TeenHelp)

A lot of content is posted to TeenHelp every single day, from threads to articles, social groups to albums. But it is difficult for even the most veteran user to keep on top of it all, so we have selected a few items from among the masses that we thought were interesting to draw your attention to.



Do you think dreams mean anything?
We all have dreams, and they can last for a few seconds or for several minutes. Is our subconscious trying to tell us something or do you think dreams are meaningless?

Would you marry at 18-25 years old?
What are your views about getting married at a young age? Would you do it? See what others have said, as well as share your own thoughts.

How did you practice self care today?
There are many benefits of taking care of yourself. What did you do to take care of yourself today?

What is your life motto?
There are many different approaches to life, this thread discusses a number of different mottos that people live by.



A different way to see the world
One user describes how Synaesthesia affects her life every day. If you have Synaesthesia, you are not alone. Read this blog to find out more about what it is.

The light that shines when there is only dark
This user writes about the more positive side of things, that there is hope, and light when there is darkness. Check out this blog for some inspiration, and an account that things do get better.



After Rain
People often document their lives in different ways. Some people track it in a journal, while others take pictures. This user took photos while walking in the rain; see how she expressed herself through pictures.

Creating art is another way for people to express themselves. Check out this user's artwork here - maybe they will inspire you to paint your own pictures!


Picture Of The Month

Each month we feature a picture by one of our users. If you would like to see your picture here please contact us by replying to this Newsletter, emailing us at contact@teenhelp.org, or messaging our Newsletter Officer (Halcyon) on the website.

Picture by Illuminate


Upcoming events

Discussion: Living with mental illness (Saturday July 20th 2013)

Although one in four people experience mental health problems, there is regrettably still a stigma attached to it, which prevents people from seeking help. Consequently, living with a mental illness can be a particularly isolating time. If you are concerned about your mental health, join this discussion to discuss day-to-day coping techniques, how to reach out to professionals and other aspects of living with mental illness.

Discussion: Seeking employment (Saturday July 27th 2013)

We all dream of the perfect job, but when it comes down to reality, we may be faced with tough competition. How do we find the most suitable job for us? With all the opportunities that are available, how can we narrow down what we want and what we are qualified for? This discussion will help you to consider the options, seek advice from those who have been through a similar process, and get answers to any questions that you may have.

Discussion: Facing the challenges of growing up (Saturday August 3rd 2013)

The transition from childhood, through adolescence and into adulthood can be very testing, as you seek to find greater independence and a balanced lifestyle, while also coping with the developmental, emotional and psychological changes to your mind and body. You are not alone, however. Join this discussion for advice on how to make the transition easier, and to learn from the experiences of others.

Discussion: Achieving positive body image (Saturday August 10th 2013)

Our body image is how we feel about our bodies, and does not depend on our size or shape. Achieving a positive body image can be difficult, but you are not alone. Join this discussion to learn how to resist the social pressures and the media, and to feel comfortable and good about your body.

For more information about upcoming Facilitated Chat Room Discussions (FCRDs), and the times that these discussions will take place, please visit our FCRD page.



Donate to TeenHelp

In order to continue providing free services to young people around the world, TeenHelp requires a constant income of voluntary donations to support our regular costs. If you are able to, we ask that you please donate any money you can to us, even if it's only a few dollars.



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Our social networking pages are a great place to get a lot of high-quality information. We aim to connect you to interesting organisations, volunteering opportunities, events, news stories, pictures, videos, and more!

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Editorial team

Newsletter Officer/Editor-in-Chief: Haley (Halcyon)
Assistant Editor: Lyndsee (Glitter.)
Assistant Editor: Sammi (Masquerade.)
Assistant Editor: Rianna (Starlight.)
Assistant Editor: Chess (Syzygy.)

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