This is a guest post by Maggie Cardin, a 2014 Rock Ethics Institute Stand Up Award Honoree.
“Watch out” I hear someone yell as a cloud of yellow color floods my vision. I quickly run to get past the color station as my white shirt now has a splatter of yellow paint on it. By the end of the event, my shirt wasn’t the only thing filled with rainbows of color. Washing my hair three times that night was a small price to pay for the reward of watching over 700 runners complete the first Teen Hope Aevidum Color Run.
It has been a few months since I was honored to receive the 2014 Rock Ethics Institute’s Stand Up Award and I know that my advocacy work for students silently suffering with mental health issues is still in its infancy stage. While a student at Penn State, I worked mainly to educate my peers, both in my major and those in the general campus population, to the warning signs of depression and suicide among young people. In addition, I felt it was important for students suffering to know there is help available to them and most importantly, they are not alone.
Since graduating from Penn State in May, Aevidum’s focus has been planning for “THE TALK.” No, not that
talk. This talk will be one focused on students talking to their peers about mental health issues impacting their generation. In October, Aevidum will train many student leaders, representing over 50 school districts, who will in turn go back to their school and have “THE TALK.”
Aevidum has made great strides in spreading mental health awareness, to think “THE TALK” will be in over 50 schools makes my heart race with excitement, but then I stop and take a step back. Aevidum is in 50 schools, 50 schools will be raising awareness about mental health and having their friends back, but there are 5000 (and lots more) schools out there with hundreds of thousands of students that still need to hear Aevidum’s message of hope.
I’ve got your back. Do you have mine?