South Carolina hopes site matters to teens

Seeing a dearth of ways to reach teenagers about mental health issues, South Carolina has set up a Web site that promises to deliver "matters that matter to teens" in a way that relates more directly to them than other so-called teen health sites.

The Teen Matters Web site (www.teen-matters.com), hosted by five students at Spring Valley High School in Columbia, uses video and graphics to provide teens with information on such topics as suicide, body image, bullies, rape, and drug and alcohol abuse.

Such a site was needed because although teenagers are told all the time to talk to someone if they have problems, they rarely do, said Susan Craft, assistant director of communications for the South Carolina Department of Mental Health. With the emerging Internet culture, however, teens might be more willing to go to the Internet to seek information and help, she said.

And despite a plethora of sites that focus on teen issues, few of them address the teens directly, Craft said.

"I went to about 500 sites that said they were for teens to check them out," she said. "But they were mostly for parents or counselors, and only a very few made any attempt to reach out to the teens directly."

The site officially launched May 7. Craft said her department will visit schools around the state in the fall to encourage them to link the Teen Matters site with their own school sites. Then, the program will be reviewed early next year to analyze attendance and use, and to see if other features, such as chat rooms, should be added to the Web site.

About the Author

Brian Robinson is a freelance writer based in Portland, Ore.

Featured

  • Congress
    Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at the Hack the Capitol conference Sept. 20, 2018

    Jim Langevin's view from the Hill

    As chairman of of the Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committe and a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rhode Island Democrat Jim Langevin is one of the most influential voices on cybersecurity in Congress.

  • Comment
    Pilot Class. The author and Barbie Flowers are first row third and second from right, respectively.

    How VA is disrupting tech delivery

    A former Digital Service specialist at the Department of Veterans Affairs explains efforts to transition government from a legacy "project" approach to a more user-centered "product" method.

  • Cloud
    cloud migration

    DHS cloud push comes with complications

    A pressing data center closure schedule and an ensuing scramble to move applications means that some Homeland Security components might need more than one hop to get to the cloud.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.