Teen Advisory Council

The teen advisory council is an action-oriented group that represents student voices in shaping OMM’s goals, programming, and communications.

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Hi all! I am a first-year student at George Mason University intending to pursue civil engineering and conflict analysis & resolution. My experiences and strong interest in engineering and advocacy piqued my passion for raising awareness on the importance of mental health and the use of peacebuilding in our daily lives. My greatest joy is seeing people prioritize self-care and self-growth to help radiate the best version of themselves. Meaningful conversations, laughter, running, napping, spending quality time with friends/family, and eating cookies & creme flavored ice cream are my ways of recharging! I’m overly excited to work with everyone being the student perspective for OMM development in hopes of radiating more peace for our world. OMM has been my safe space since September 2018 and I can’t wait to see what’s yet to come for the Teen Advisory Council!

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Hello, Our Minds Matter family! My name is Ava Belmont, and I am thrilled to serve as the OMM Teen Advisory Council President for this coming school year. I am a senior at Mount Vernon High School in Northern Virginia, and I am a passionate advocate for mental health awareness. I enjoy working to help destigmatize adolescent mental health, and I have been a student leader with the Our Minds Matter club at my school for the past year. From school-wide mental health months to weekly club meetings, my school’s OMM club has been a safe place for many students, including myself! Though I have dealt with my own struggles of mental health and chronic illness, I try to use my experiences to make a positive impact on others. When I am not in school or advocating for mental health, I enjoy volunteering at local parks, embroidery, and playing with my hedgehog, “Hedgie”. I am honored and humbled to have the opportunity to work with the Our Minds Matter Teen Advisory Council, and I look forward to providing a unique perspective on teen mental health. I hope to learn more about mental health and collaborate with fellow council members to further the important work that Our Minds Matter does for students everywhere.

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My name is Jose Aguilera, I’m from Honduras, and I’m currently a senior at Watkins Mill High School. I started in OMM as a president in my school and I’m going into my second year as president of the club. OMM has helped me notice how I need to take care of myself and also help others with their mental health. I aspire to help people all over the world since I’ve always been passionate about helping others. Sports, writing poems, music, and being around my family and friends brings me joy and peace. In the Teen Advisory Council, I hope to meet new people and transmit my passion for mental health so they can start helping others.

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Hello! I’m Mayuka Valluri, and I am serving as the Secretary for the OMM Teen Advisory Council (OMM TAC). I am currently a sophomore in high school, and I like to read, play the flute, play volleyball, and sew in my free time. I believe that mental health is an extremely important and prevalent topic, and it is crucial that we approach it with different backgrounds in mind. I hope that through our efforts as the OMM TAC, we are able to provide the much needed student based perspective to the discussion of mental health, allowing us to affirm, support, and guide young people all around the world through their own personal journeys in regards to this topic. 

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Coming from a country where mental health is heavily stigmatised, I learned the importance of mental health through the tragic consequences of others around me. My religion, family and morals motivate me to be an impact of goodness on this world, thus I happily convey my efforts to OMM(TAC). As the previous Vice President of OMM at George C. Marshall High School I hope to bring quality service to OMM(TAC), refined by a year’s worth of virtual experience.

 

Currently as the Outreach and Community Coordinator I have the responsibility to bring in information of the recent events to the council, in order to aid with the planning of future events. Furthermore I will act as a support for future recruitment and other areas of event planning. I wish to utilize my limited skills of art for the benefit of the council and for the welfare of my community.

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My name is Mandy Le and I am a senior at Hayfield Secondary! I am the president of my school’s Our Minds Matter club and it is amazing to be involved in OMM because it has allowed me the chance to make people’s day brighter and be the support system for those who do not have their own. Each meeting has brought me so much happiness, allowing me to disconnect from my stressful life. My aspirations are to become a successful woman in STEM and hopefully be able to encourage more girls to pursue this passion. My volunteer work, specifically with underprivileged kids in Vietnam, and the memories I make with loved ones bring me the most amount of joy. I hope that being a part of the teen advisory council will allow me to work alongside people who share the same passions towards mental health awareness and to also create a positive impact in other people’s lives.

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My name is María José Garcés, I’m 17 years old and I’m a senior at The Columbus School. I’m the Social Media Facilitator for OMM’s Teen Advisory Council and the club leader of TCS Minds Matter.  OMM has had a great impact on myself, it has given me a chance to learn about how I’m feeling and why, as well as encouraged me to talk about my emotions and experiences without feeling judged. Similarly, it has impacted my community by allowing others to learn about mental health and has helped diminish the stigmas and stereotypes society has set on this topic. My passions are reading and learning and my aspirations are going to college, having a successful career, and meeting every one of my goals. Things that give me the most joy are the little moments in life such as playing a board game with my family, feeling the sand on my toes at the beach, enjoying an ice cream with my friends, and dancing around my room. I hope to gain a lot of knowledge about mental health, leadership, teamwork, and advocacy out of the Teen Advisory Council. Moreover, I hope to gain new ideas, learnings, and plans in order to share them with my community.

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Hi! My name is CJ Crombie and I’m a rising HS senior. I find joy in reading, spending time outside, skiing, and trying new things that excite me! I’m extremely passionate about my future, my education, and being a leader to others. Currently, I’m the President and former VP of Wolverine Minds Matter at West Potomac HS, and this is my 3rd year as a member of Our Minds Matter. OMM has enabled me to learn and show others that mental health awareness is not just about knowing the “big” mental health issues like Depression and Anxiety, but also about understanding the less common afflictions across the board. I hope to use this understanding to create an open and supportive environment within Wolverine Minds Matter and employ it within the Teen Advisory Council as well to guide others to the same understanding.

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Hello! My name is Sophie Levine. I am 16 years old, and I am a junior at Haddonfield Memorial High School in New Jersey. I have been involved with Our Minds Matter since freshman year. As a sophomore, I was promoted to Vice President, and I have loved being an officer for the past year. Our local chapter has held fundraisers for suicide awareness, been involved with school wellness events, and hosted yoga/mindfulness sessions. Mental health is one of my greatest passions, and I hope to educate others on how important it truly is. Some of my passions outside of the club include competitive dance, singing, and American Sign Language. Through the Teen Advisory Council, I look forward to finding mentors and integrating the teen voice into the council. I hope to meet and collaborate with other students about how to make Our Minds Matter the best it can be!