The JED Foundation

Empowering our Communities

Jed Foundation

Youth mental health, substance misuse, and suicide are major, long-term public health issues in the U.S. negatively impacting communities, schools, and families. The  COVID-19 pandemic has increased mental health stressors and reduced access to care for millions of teens and young adults. 

The impact on New York City’s high school students is significant. Many New York City students have lost parents/caregivers to the pandemic, causing grief and creating instability. Others live in families that have been pushed into poverty as a result of pandemic-related job losses, resulting in financial insecurity, and parental anxiety and stress.

Gotham Gives is partnering with The Jed Foundation (JED) for the rapid implementation of a public health initiative to protect the emotional health and wellbeing of New York City’s youth. 

JED is an established and respected leader in advancing evidence-based strategies to support and improve mental health in youth. JED combines deep subject matter expertise —  in youth mental health and suicide, school systems change, program design, implementation, and evaluation — with local, school- and community-based knowledge. JED works with the schools to assemble a diverse team made up of administrators, educators, students, parents and caregivers, and mental health professionals to develop a strategic plan that guides all work.

The support from Gotham Gives will allow JED to significantly expand its work in New York City within public high schools attended by higher-risk youth by rapidly scaling its JED High School model. JED will support the New York City Department of Education on system-level strategies, and work with school districts and individual schools on a range of youth mental health and suicide prevention topics.  

In New York City, JED will also expand its community workshops for youth, parents, families, and other community members and engage in communication campaigns to support and complement its in-school work. 

Over the next 3.5 years, Gotham Gives’ support will substantially help JED reach its goal of implementing the JED High School program at 75-100 New York City high schools, directly reaching an estimated 60,000-80,000 students, and indirectly reaching additional schools and students through engagements and district level campaigns.

JED developed a communications campaign in partnership with the New York City Department of Education called “There’s Help All Around You”; the second phase, “Let’s Talk,” launched in May 2021.