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DuPage teens host virtual mental health panel on May 4

DuPage County high school teens will be hosting a virtual Teens Talk Mental Health Panel at 4 p.m. May 4, to discuss the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on teens. Panelists will include State Rep. Terra Costa Howard, Glenbard North High School Social Worker Dr. Jeff Money, Rosecrance Behavioral Health Community Relations Coordinator Matt Quinn, Glenbard West student Gavin Schilling, and Naperville North student Jordan King.

Moderating this panel is high school senior Justine Rozenich. Early into the COVID-19 pandemic, Justine took the initiative to organize a two-day virtual health symposium to help her high school peers who were struggling with COVID-19 restrictions.

“We’ve missed regular activities, playing sports, going to dances, and being able to hang out together. We have also learned how resilient we can be. But the past year has taken a toll on many people’s mental health. This panel is a great way for teens to express their feelings and discuss ideas to increase mental health among teens,” said Justine.

Data collected through the 2020 Illinois Youth Survey, a self-reported adolescent survey administered in Illinois schools, indicated pre-COVID-19 depression rates among DuPage County teens were double the national average. This is deeply concerning as researchers have found that about half of those who experience a mental health disorder during their lives will also experience a co-occurring substance use disorder and vice versa.

The Teens Talk Mental Health Panel is open to the public and teens are especially encouraged to attend and listen in. People can register for this event at https://bit.ly/3sB5CD4.

The event is being hosted and moderated by the teen advisory board to the DuPage County Health Department and the DuPage County Prevention Leadership Team.

Posted: April 28, 2021