Pudsey Bear is the iconic mascot behind the BBC’s fundraising campaign, “Children in Need”. While he’s well-known for his yellow fur, button nose, and polka-dot bandana, our resident teddy bear has undergone a makeover – and the reason behind his new look is so important.
Taking to Instagram on 16 May, Dr Alex George posted a series of images alongside Pudsey, who is no longer wearing a bandana over his eye.”Wondering why Pudsey has removed his iconic bandana?”, the former “Love Island” star began. “This is @bbccin’s amazing Behind the Bandana campaign.” The campaign is addressing the fact that not all disabilities can be seen, especially those surrounding mental health. George, who is the Government’s Youth Mental Health Ambassador, went on to explain: “It’s a reminder that not all challenges that children and young people face are visible, particularly mental health issues. We all know that a problem shared is a problem halved, so encouraging open conversations is a really important step in improving the mental health of everyone.” Joe Wicks has also shown his support for the campaign.
Meanwhile, the BBC “Children in Need” website explains more. It details that, according to the Children’s Society, the likelihood of young people having a mental health issue in the last 3 years has increased by 50 percent, while the Mental Health Foundation has found that 75 percent aren’t getting the help they need.
“More and more kids are experiencing poor mental health,” the site begins. “That’s why Pudsey’s removed his bandana, to show that mental health issues are often less visible and to encourage conversations that can help.” Elsewhere, the site advises conversation starters for young people to encourage them to open up about their mental health, including “What difficult things are you going through at the moment?”, and “Is there anything that’s on your mind when you are trying to sleep?” Pudsey’s new look might be temporary, but his message is long-lasting.