The Student News Site of Harvard-Westlake School

The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

The Student News Site of Harvard-Westlake School

The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

The Student News Site of Harvard-Westlake School

The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle

Mental health club organizes booth at lunch for awareness

Jack Ryan
The Student Mental Health Alliance handed out information and fidget toys to help students with their mental well-being. The alliance members hope to host more events like the booth in the future.

The Student Mental Health Alliance ran a booth on the Quad to celebrate National Mental Health Awareness Month on May 22. The Alliance gave students fidget toys, cookies and facts about mental health. Students also scanned QR codes for guided meditations and mindfulness playlists.

Upper School Counselor Michelle Bracken founded the club and appointed Karsten Cole ’24, Sunny Lu ’25, Micah Parr ’25, Rachel Reiff ’25 and Dennett Stibel ’25 as co-leaders.

Parr said the goal of the booth was to interact with the community and improve students’ mental wellness.

“We [want to] engage with the community and hear what they have to say,” Parr said. “[We handed] a bunch of things out about wellness and how you can better yourself from a mental health perspective. It’s meant to be a peaceful day.”

Parr said the alliance originally wanted to host a more expansive field day.

“Initially, we wanted to do a mental health field day because kids were refusing to engage with their mental well-being,” Parr said. “The mental health field day would have had guided meditations, yoga and speakers talking about how you could better your mental health. Unfortunately, the administration didn’t want to have two extended lunch periods in a row with the multicultural fair.”

Dylan Wuo ’25 said he thought a field day would have had a positive impact on his mental well-being.

“I do think [a field day] would have worked well because I know last year, [there were] three field days in May,” Wuo said. “That was the time I started going out onto the field more, and I think there was only one this May. I feel like having one to end the year would have been good. The field days forced me to not think about the things that were stressing me by being able to chill around the field.”

Stibel said student leaders hope to continue to change policies and host events to help students.

“In the future, [we] hope to make more sweeping policy changes at our school in favor of the students’ wants and needs,” Stibbel said. “We also are organizing a wellness day at the beginning of next year with guided meditations, more resources and community time where students can connect in a non-academic way.”

Parr said any positive contribution to the community’s well-being is valuable.

“[We want] to educate people and help them out any level,” Parr said. “If [this booth] can make things better for just a few people, that’s at least something. We’ve got to start somewhere.”

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