NJAMHAA

Inspiring High School Valedictorian Demonstrates How to Break Down Barriers to Mental Health Care in Schools

NJAMHAA's and Attitude in Reverse®’s Suicide Prevention Conference Will Take Place on September 20th   

“Mental health should not scare or shock people. However, that is what ends up happening when it is discussed in an inappropriate context,” according to Bryce Dershem, a recent high school graduate, who will deliver the keynote presentation, Breaking Barriers, at the New Jersey Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies’ (NJAMHAA’s) and Attitudes In Reverse®’s (AIR™’s) 9th Annual Suicide Prevention Conference, Back to School: Breaking the Barriers, which will be held virtually on September 20, 2021 from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Dershem will discuss the importance of eliminating barriers for students to obtain mental health care services. “Without talking about mental health in a certain way, many students turn to social media and the Internet for information. This can result in misinformation and triggering behaviors in students who are already struggling with their mental health, which can perpetuate a cycle of harm,” Dershem added.

Schools must create safe and supportive environments for all students so they can succeed academically while maintaining and strengthening their mental and physical health. As stated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), for youth to thrive in schools and their communities, they need to feel physically, socially and emotionally safe and supported. This is especially true for youth who identify as members of the lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender-queer-or-questioning-intersex-asexual-plus (LGBTQIA+) community and students who suffer from mental illness. Acceptance in the school community will be discussed by Rosetta D. Treece, EdD, Superintendent of Schools for the Hopewell Valley Regional School District, during the Suicide Prevention Conference.

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High School Valedictorian Demonstrates How to Break Down Barriers to Mental Health Care In Schools
NJAMHAA's and Attitude in Reverse®'s Suicide Prevention Conference Will Take Place on September 20th "Mental health should not scare or shock people. However, that is what ends up happening when it is discussed in an inappropriate context," according to Bryce Dershem, a recent high ...
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