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Country-pop starts Juna (17) and Joey (19) bring music and mental health message to Elgin High pupils

By Lewis McBlane

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RISING stars Juna N Joey showed off their classy Nashville pop-country to Elgin High pupils last week and shared a powerful mental health message.

The pop-country pair promoted tips for managing mental health and coping with bullying.
The pop-country pair promoted tips for managing mental health and coping with bullying.

On Thursday, June 23, an appreciate crowd of Elgin High pupils were treated to 40 minutes of music and guidance from sibling duo Juna (17) and Joey (19).

The show, among folded up canteen tables, turned Elgin High's atrium into a makeshift music venue.

The event was a welcome distraction for the pupils, who queued up to have posters, shoes, arms and foreheads signed.

Taking the stage in the atrium, Joey said: "We are very excited to play some country music for you guys."

After playing through some original songs, including latest single More Than a Maybe, and country covers featuring tight harmonies and catchy hooks, the pair took a moment to discuss bullying, mental health and wellbeing.

Juna said: "Not a lot of people talk about mental health or think they can open up to somebody.

"But there are so many people out there, like us, online who can help and helplines people can use.

"That is the most important thing, to just say something about it."

Joey said: "Any students here who are doing any creative things, music or anything else, have to never give up.

"Keep going and don't let anybody stop you doing what you want to do."

The pair also shared tips like getting eight hours of sleep a night, exercising and having friends you can trust.

Principal teacher of curriculum development Lisa McCulloch played a key role in getting Juna N Joey to perform.

She said the visit was a hit with pupils and the wellbeing messages came through loud and clear.

She said: "It was a really good thing to have for the pupils.

"The music was great and the message was really good too.

"I think they were really taking it on board, it was nothing fussy, it was just giving great information about how to deal with these situations.

"It talked about how to cope with cyberbullying, how to cope with mental health issues and it was really nice to hear it from a young person's point of view too.

Juna and Joey are ambassadors for anti-bullying charity teachantibulling.org and have already played to schools in England, Inverness, Thurso and Forres.

Anchor, a song Juna wrote for the charity, encourages people to reach out and rely on others when they need held.

Juna said: "I would say to definitely speak up if you are going through bullying or mental health problems.

"Definitely say something."

Before leaving Elgin High, Joey said: "I think it went great, we sure signed a load of stuff, a lot of foreheads!

"And hopefully they got more turned on to country music because that's our goal, and actually I hoped they learned about mental health and how to cope with it.

"This is something like our 25th school so far, so we don't always know exactly where we are going!

"We kind of have our manager and our tour manager help us with that.

"But we are always going to more schools, festivals and gigs around the whole UK.

"We kind of get lost in the sauce, honestly.

"I would like to thank all the kids for coming out and listening to us."

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