Born in New Delhi, arrived in the United States in his senior year, then enrolled at a University in New York and, within a few years, at almost twenty-two and with a degree to complete, he found himself as an important reference point for the themes and communities dedicated to working with mental health problems in young people. This is the story of Satvik Sethi who, in just a few years, has managed to gain an important role in this field and collaborated with the public sector in the United States and with global organizations such as WHO and Unicef.
A few points published in a WHO 2018 report help us to frame the enormity of a problem that, fortunately, is starting to become a priority on the agendas of those who deal with social issues: "Self-harm is the third leading cause of deaths in 15-19-year-olds. 80% of depression begins in adolescence, but many cases go undetected and untreated. Moreover, many unhealthy behaviours and health conditions are interlinked. For instance, bullying can lead to self-harm, eating disorders, or anxiety disorders that can persist throughout their lifetime, as well as making it more likely that a young person will have suicidal thoughts."
It was Satvik himself, several times, that explained how all this was born by chance: he was wasting time on Instagram when he came across the image of someone self-harming, who grabbed his attention and it came so spontaneous to Satvik to write to him and let him that, if he needed to speak to someone, he would be there to listen. A dynamic that fascinated him and led him to get in touch, and talk online, with a few hundred people with mental health issues in the following three years. Where did the urge to do all this come from? Simply "helping others," said Sethi. "I had no idea there was a professional and organized world in support of these people." These years spent writing to these people have made him aware of what the most recurring problems were and, above all, of what they were really looking for online.