The Youth Health Summit (YHS), a one day, youth-led, conference planned by Youth Health Club (YHC) of Richmond Hill High School. The Summit raised awareness and educated others on the topic of mental health and its prevalence in society. The event took place on May 9th at the Hilton Garden Inn, from 10am to 5pm, and helped youth in the community to build skills in dealing with others who suffer from mental illness. YHS brought attention to the importance of maintaining a positive mental health and addressing mental health issues with care and concern. Through a variety of interactive and enthusiastic sessions and activities, as well as engaging in thought provoking conversation pertaining to mental health; youth were provided with the resources to help end negative stigma surrounding mental health, start mental health initiatives in their schools and use education as a tool to increase awareness of various mental illnesses. Speakers and youth had the opportunity to converse about their struggles and mental health issues to show their peers they are not alone and through understanding, education and friendships help can be found.
The day featured speakers who spoke out on depression, body image, endorphins, stress and maintaining a positive wellbeing. Topics such as autism, suicide, self-harm, depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder were openly discussed in a safe environment with trained youth leaders.
All Youth Health Club high school chapter executives and delegate leaders, called “Pacemakers” were safeTALK trained in preparation for the event. This training aided them in dealing with a delegate’s potential, mental health issues in a more professional level. Pacemakers could also direct delegates with the next steps in dealing with a crisis situation. To learn more about safeTALK visit the following website: https://www.livingworks.net/programs/safetalk
Mira Persaud, YHC founder and president, was excited to announce YHC's collaboration with The Ripple Effect Wellness Organization (TREWO). Without TREWO and their support, this one of a kind youth-led event would not be possible.
Delegates, through their registration fee were able to raise $500 for Kids Help Phone and TREWO.