Ally Beard: college freshman and co-founder of Running From Anxiety

Youth overcoming stigma
College freshman Ally Beard was not the youngest speaker
 at the annual AWI event on May 2nd.  She was, however, the youngest to launch her own non-profit  organization to improve prevention of anxiety!  I will explain more about that in the Featured Guest section below. I mention it here  because I see so much progress in overcoming stigma. I remember in 2005 my town of Wellesley was in the midst of a suicide contagion; the teens said '...the adults won't talk about this'. AWI was launched to  promote tools for teens and schools to help prevent depression and suicide. Our goal is shifting now to encourage wider adoption of healthy coping and problem solving skills across all ages and all geography (ex. video illustrates a school group in India that uses a resource from Boston Children's Hospital:  Teens talk depression in India).  
Locally, AWI has invited t he hospital  to pilot its newest resource, 'Break Free From Stress and Anxiety' with teen leaders this September.

AWI is also sponsoring the introduction of an exercise in cognitive flexibility to schools in Connecticut in collaboration with the Creative Education Foundation.  Basically, it provides the youngest students a practical model for creative problem solving. 

Best regards,  

you can improve your cognitive flexibility?    

Research confirms better coping and problem-solving skills can help prevent at least 1 in 5 cases of depression. In the newsletter last month, AWI posted a worksheet for teens and adults to more easily exercise creative problem solving. This month the download is for  children in elementary grades to exercise.
Featured guest

Ally Beard spoke at the annual AWI event.  I was struck by the theme, that she was encouraged  by a friend in high school to ask an adult about her mood. 

This was clearly a helpful conversation as Ally got herself feeling better, accepted into Harvard AND in her spare time launched a non-profit to help others (Running From Anxiety, Inc.). 

We all want more of these informed conversations to occur!
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Art by Mary Bevilaqua and Ana Natalia Epstein

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AWI Volunteers

T he people who make it happen!
  • Bob Anthony - President
  • Chip Douglas - Chairman
  • Phyllis Gimbel - Director
  • Calvin Place - Director
  • Lisa Siegel - Director
  • Penny Wells - Director
  • Jessi Somogie - Youth program
  • Frank Hays - Marketing

Bob Anthony | Adolescent Wellness, Inc. | 781.727.8617 | |