After taking time off from music to deal with his health, Justin Bieber is back to work promoting music from his forthcoming album, "Changes." He's also speaking publicly about the mental, emotional and physical struggles that forced him to put the brakes on his career for a spell, including the deep depression that's plagued him for much of the past few years.
On Friday, Feb. 7, the singer proved he's determined to pay more than just lip service to the matter of mental health awareness, too. During the taping of an episode of MTV's "Fresh Out Live," Justin appeared at the network's New York City studios to present a check for $100,000 to Julie Coker, a young fan who's fighting to create more awareness about mental health issues.
Julie, 22, began working with the organization Active Minds on her college campus in New Jersey after she was diagnosed with depression, she tells Page Six. Since then, she's helped screen thousands of students for depression, suicide risk and eating disorders, according to the New York Post.
"It's important for us to talk about mental health because more than 50 percent of us will have a mental health challenge in our lifetime," she tells the outlet.
"[Justin] has a big following, so if he has a good message about mental health, hopefully everybody else … will want to start thinking about mental health in a different way," says Julie, who hopes to study clinical social work in graduate school.
Last week, Justin released a moving video to accompany "Intentions," a single from his new album. The video features the stories of three women who have been working to support others struggling with difficulties related to foster care, education access and homelessness, according to Rolling Stone.
In the video, Justin and Quavo can be seen visiting Alexandria House, a transitional living facility for women and children in Los Angeles who are trying to "move from crisis to stability."
According to a slide at the end of the "Intentions" video, Justin has also established a $200,000 fund to support Alexandria House.