Transforming Teen Mental Health: The Journey of “To Youth, From Youth”

At Advantage Treatment Centers, we are incredibly proud to support initiatives that make a tangible difference in our community. One such initiative is the remarkable “To Youth, From Youth” program, founded by the inspiring young Kaylin Baquera. This program is dedicated to creating a safe space where teenagers can learn to support their peers through mental health challenges, truly transforming the way youth mental health is approached and understood.

Kaylin, who started “To Youth, From Youth” at just 14 years old, was motivated by her own experiences and the tragic loss of a friend to suicide. Recognizing the urgent need for peer support among teens facing mental health issues, she envisioned a program that empowers young people to be a lifeline for each other. Thanks to the generous funding from organizations like El Pomar Foundation, Bloedorn Foundation, Common Spirit, and our team at Advantage Treatment Centers, Kaylin’s vision has become a vibrant reality.

The program consists of a carefully designed 10-session curriculum that fosters understanding, communication, and real support among teens. Starting with building trust and relationships, the curriculum progresses through understanding emotions, recognizing mental health red flags, and discussing critical topics such as bullying and the impacts of suicide. By the final lesson, participants are encouraged to openly talk about suicide to reduce stigma and promote help-seeking behaviors.

A particularly innovative aspect of Kaylin’s vision is the creation of the “Dream Team”—a peer support group that would accompany young people in crisis situations, providing comfort and understanding in times of need. This initiative aims to bridge the often daunting gap between young people and adults, enhancing the support system for youth in crisis.

Kaylin’s commitment to expanding her program is unwavering. With plans to develop a follow-up curriculum for adults and collaborate with local law enforcement and hospitals, she is setting the stage for a comprehensive community response to youth mental health.

As part of our commitment at Advantage Treatment Centers, we are more than just a funding body; we are active partners in fostering initiatives like “To Youth, From Youth” that create meaningful change. We believe in empowering our youth, as they hold the key to a healthier, more compassionate future.

To learn more about the transformative work being done through “To Youth, From Youth,” or to get involved, visit Break the Silence in Fort Morgan or explore their resources online. Together, we can build a community where no youth feels alone in their mental health journey.

For updates and more information on how we continue to support our community’s mental health, stay connected with us at Advantage Treatment Centers. Here, we don’t just treat — we empower and heal together.

 

This is a write-up on the article originally posted in the Ft. Morgan Times.  Read the original article here.