Information for young people

What is OLA?

It can be common for young people to feel distressed, some people may call this depression or anxiety. Young people who live in big cities more often experience stressful events such as conflict, poverty, substance misuse and social isolation. This includes young people in Latin America, which is one of the most urban parts of the world. Although many individuals experience stressful events, many people do not develop mental distress, and when people do become distressed, half will recover within a year.

OLA therefore aims to identify resources that help young people to prevent or recover from mental distress, including depression and anxiety. We will focus on adolescents (aged 15-16) and young people (aged 20-24) who live in three large Latin American cities: Buenos Aires, Bogotá and Lima. We are keen to include both adolescents and young people who are currently experiencing symptoms of mental distress and those who are not.

What research activities are happening now?

The OLA study is a large research programme, which involves different activities that are being completed at different times. Please take a look at the different activities that are happening now and if you would like any more information, or you want to take part in one or more of these research activities, please contact us.

All research activities are planned to include face-to-face meetings with a member of the research team. However, due to the current situation of the COVID-19 pandemic, we may ask you to complete questionnaires online and/or meet with researchers on a video or phone call instead.

Cross-sectional study
We invite adolescents and young adults to complete a series of questionnaires that we developed with other young people, adolescents and professionals during the first part of the study. Your answers will help us to identify which resources help young people to prevent and / or overcome mental health problems, including depression and anxiety.

Can I take part?

You may take part if you:

  • Are between the ages of 15 and 16 or 20-24 years old.
  • Currently live in Buenos Aires (Argentina), Bogotá (Colombia) or Lima (Peru).
  • If you are under the age of 18 years of age, your parent or caregiver also must give you permission to participate in the study.

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