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Help Me Help NL Youth With Anxiety

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Dear Friends and Supporters,

It is with a heavy but determined heart that I reach out to you today.

Anxiety is a growing epidemic, particularly in Newfoundland and Labrador. According to the Canadian Mental Health Association it is estimated that 10-20% of Canadian youth are affected by a mental illness or disorder - the single most disabling group of disorders worldwide.

Today, approximately 5% of male youth and 12% of female youth, age 12 to 19, have experienced a major depressive episode and suicide is among the leading causes of death in 15 - 24 year old Canadians, second only to accidents; 4,000 people die prematurely each year by suicide.

It is very clear that mental health care needs continue to go unmet for Newfoundlanders & Labradorians. In addition, never before have we seen such a rapid increase in mental health issues among our own youth as what we are seeing today.

Stress, anxiety, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), depression, among many other forms of mental trauma are putting our kids at risk of debilitating lives and even suicide.

To hear one-on-one what these kids are going through is absolutely heart wrenching. Some of these kids cannot go to school because their anxiety is so severe. Some can't even leave their house. 

And then there is 'exam anxiety'. Thousands of NL kids suffer with extreme stress and anxiety when it comes time to write exams. This anxiety can lead into nausea, dizziness, and even panic attacks. 

And the sad reality is so many of these students are self-medicating with alcohol and recreational drugs. This, in return is only making the problem worse.

If you have a child or know a child with anxiety you know how debilitating this can be. 

We need to help these kids and shed some light on this problem.

There are simple, yet very effective techniques, that when taught properly can make a huge difference.

But we can’t do it without your help.

We need to raise $10, 000 for ten schools in order to bring Calm Your Mind, Transform Your Life: For Students presentation to them. This presentation is designed to give students the practical tools they need to reduce the agonizing pain of anxiety. It's creative, fun, practical, and most importantly impactful. works!

My name is Jeremy Bennett and I know what it’s like to grow up as a child suffering with a mental illness. At the age of twelve I developed Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). I had no idea what was happening to my mind and my body. I would suffer frequent panic attacks and the only way to reduce the pain endured by the sudden loss of control was to perform ‘compulsions’ to tame the anxiety. As week by week past, I noticed myself starting to perform more of these odd compulsions to reduce the amount of psychological torment that I was experiencing. I was becoming a prisoner of my own mind.

Considering that the stigma back then was even bigger as it is today, no one around me even heard of OCD and even though my parents and family wanted to help they were completely unequipped to deal with something so foreign.

As the months progressed, I noticed anxiety was not only becoming a part of my life, it was taking over my life. My compulsive behaviour started to interfere with my schooling as I dropped from grades in the 90s to grades in the low 40s becoming endangered of failing grades 7-12. I stopped socializing, studying, and started spending my weekends staring at my wall in my bedroom. One month in particular the anxiety was so severe I lost almost 40 lbs in under one month.

During my worse years of OCD, I was performing up to four to six hours a day of compulsions to tame my potential hundreds of anxiety attacks a week. I became obsessed with counting things around me, repeating words until my mind felt 'right', walked back and forth over practically every line on the floors (gym class became a nightmare), brushing my teeth until my gums bled, and leaving my body in extreme pain, all the way to organizing everything around me on a thirty degree angle. I had no where to turn and had no idea what was going on.

At age seventeen, I was formally diagnosed with a severe form of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder in addition to depression. I felt so alone and thought that there was nothing I could do to reduce the amount of anxiety I was going through until I started to look into ways of calming the mind through positive thinking, exercise therapy, meditation techniques, and positive self-talk.

After seeing a reduction in my symptoms, I started to explore the science of anxiety and why this “fight or flight” response occurs in the body. I attended St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia and earned a degree in Psychology while studying effective therapies to help calm the mind and reduce anxiety.

Since then, I devoted my life to studying anxiety, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), and simple, yet very effective ways to reduce anxiety.

In 2010, Flanker Press published my first book, The Power of The Mind: How I Beat OCD. In this book, I talked about my struggle growing up with a severe form of OCD and depression and what I did to calm my mind and live a very productive life. This book has helped tens of thousands of people from all around the world deal more effectively with anxiety.

In 2014, Motivational Press, a publisher in Los Angeles, published my second book, The Solution: Learn How to Truly Beat Stress & Anxiety. In this book I explain the the true causes of anxiety while giving practical strategies to help reduce stress, anxiety, and symptoms of depression. The material in this book has also gone on to help tens of thousands of people reduce their symptoms of anxiety.

I am also a trained professional speaker that travels North America delivering my presentation, The Secrets to Beating Stress & Anxiety. It  has been endorsed by doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists, and experts in the field. This presentation has helped tens of thousands of people live more productive, successful, and peaceful lives.

I have also produced a television show called, The Power of the Mind: How I Beat OCD. This documentary has shed light on many people’s lives and gave them a different perspective on anxiety.

I present a sixty minute presentation specifically designed for students. It’s called, Calm Your Mind, Transform Your Life: For Students.

In this presentation, I show students the detrimental effects:

- Bullying/cyber bullying
- Gossiping
- Playing violent video games
- Spending too much time on smart phones 
- Judging
- Experimentation with alcohol and drugs.

In addition, I show them the benefits of:

- Positive thinking
- Positive self-talk
- Exercise
- Spending time outside and away from smart phones
- How to NOT take things personally
- How to stop a racing mind
- Simple yet very effective ways to calm the mind, which helps build focus, self-esteem, and better study habits.

One of the key elements of the presentation encourages students to reach out for help.

Living in silence can be one of the most destructive things anyone can do while experiencing any kind of psychological pain. Living in silence means that one is not taking advantage of the organizations, counsellors, therapists, and trained professionals that could help in such difficult times. I always highly encourage every student with any kind of stress, anxiety, depression, etc. to reach out to their school counsellors for guidance. 

Calm Your Mind, Transform Your Life: For Students has been praised and endorsed by principals, vice principals, teachers, school counsellors, parents, and of course the students themselves.

“Jeremy’s presentation is AMAZING!”
Clyde Jackman, former Minister of Education, NL

“Jeremy Bennett is an inspiration to all NL’s youth.”
Joan Shea, former Minister of Education, NL

"This presentation gave me my life back." 

"Growing up with an alcoholic parent I was exposed to such pain. After seeing Jeremy's presentation I now have the tools to calm my mind and push through this difficult time. This presentation truly changed my life."

I have developed this presentation to be creative, entertaining, fun, and impactful. Even though serious topics are talked about during the presentation, it is important to keep the presentation uplifting and entertaining so the message is heard loud and clear and most importantly remembered.

I am also a professional magician and I always incorporate some magic tricks to help illustrate what I am talking about at the time. This goes such a long way with junior high and high school students as it keeps them focused and attentive.

Newfoundland and Labrador is facing one of the worse financial strains in its history. This means that there is practically no funding that the provincial government can supply to each school to help make these presentations happen.

That’s exactly why I am reaching out to you!

In order for me to travel to schools throughout the province (from St. John’s) there are several costs that have to be endured and that’s exactly where this money will be going.

Each school presentation will cost approximately $1, 000. The $1, 000 per school will be broken down as follows:

- Travel
- Accommodations
- Rental of AV equipment
- Props that will be used during presentation
- Flights (when needed)
- Per Diem
- Miscellaneous

Some of these presentations will take place on the west coast of Newfoundland which means up to 20 hours of travel in addition to hotel accommodations will have to be paid for.

I have been travelling throughout Newfoundland and Labrador presenting these presentations and know that even though $1, 000 per school is very modest, it also is very doable.

My goal is to raise $10, 000 by August 15, 2016 to deliver 10 presentations at schools throughout NL this September.

If donations exceed $10, 000 I will simply add more schools to the list.

Once each $1, 000 is obtained I will add a school to the list and update  here which school has been added.

If you are a principal, vice pricipal, teacher, or school counsellor and would like for me to present this life-changing presentation at your school please email me by visiting .

It's time to help our future generation and it starts in schools. It’s people like you who have the ability to change the lives of our youth.

Their suffering more then ever. Every donation counts, big or small. 

If you have any questions about donations, or would prefer to make a contribution by cheque, contact us at .

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Jeremy Bennett


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Jeremy Bennett
St. John's, NL

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