As National Children’s Week (NCW) continues to unfold, youth are voicing concerns over issues that directly impact their lives. Who can help put power behind their desires for change — adults who can share those voices by voting. The focus of today’s panels — healthcare that addresses kids physically, mentally and emotionally. As the world is fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, addressing these issues is more vital than ever.
Kicking things off at 3:15 pm, youth activists Seika Brown and Colleen Sherry speak with Amanda Southworth about the future of mental health. From the age of 13 Southworth began creating apps to help teens. Two results of this work can be found on Apple’s app store: Anxietyhelper and Verena, which serves as a way to help LGBTQ youth feel safe. Southworth is also executive director at Astra Labs.
At 4 pm EST the Young Entertainment Activists (YEA!) take the stage. This nonprofit serves as a hub for activists in the entertainment industry to tackle issues such as environmental justice, education diversity and inclusion. They’ll share an update on their upcoming project We’re Screened Out!
Bringing emotional intelligence and mental health into focus is a panel (4:45 pm EST) featuring leaders from Six Seconds. One goal of this organization: to emphasize how emotional intelligence is “something simple and practical — that anyone can practice and build without complex processes.” Knowledge about one’s feelings, including being aware of and expressing them with intention and purpose, can have endless benefits.
Following at 6 pm is a panel on child healthcare that delves into legislation the public, especially parents, should be aware of as we near the November presidential election. National Children’s Campaign’s Executive Director Jonah Gottlieb moderates guests including Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, a physician, epidemiologist, public health expert and progressive activist who, when running for governor of Michigan, advocated for universal healthcare. Roxie Richner, a 17-year-old political organizer from Ann Arbor, Michigan and intern for El-Sayed’s gubernatorial campaign, will join the panel.
Also weighing in on the panel is Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, the pediatrician from Flint, Michigan who revealed the city’s children were being poisoned by dangerous levels of lead. Dr. Ned Ketyer, a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics Council on Environmental Health and board member for Physicians for Social Responsibility, along with Kevin Mtai, a climate and environmental activist from Nairobi, round out the panel.
Closing out the day will be a screening of a new documentary and panel from the nonprofit This is My Brave. A bit of history: “Since 2014, This Is My Brave has produced over 65 unique shows in cities across the United States featuring nearly 800 storytellers sharing true, personal stories on overcoming depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD, psychosis, OCD, postpartum depression, borderline personality disorder, dissociative identity disorder, trichotillomania, anorexia, bulimia, sexual assault, alcoholism, substance use disorder and more.”
There’s a lot of ground to cover during the course of this six-day summit — a lot of issues impacting children around the globe over which they have no say. Tune in via NCC’s Facebook page or YouTube channel, be it for today’s panels or those from earlier this week on topics such as gun control, foster care, racial justice, climate change and education.
3:15 PM ET – The Future of Mental Health
Amanda Southworth, Developer of AnxietyHelper & Verena, & Executive Director, Astra Labs
Seika Brown , Youth Organizer, Archnova
Colleen Sherry, Youth Activist, International OCD Foundation and the National Alliance on Mental Illness, & Chair, NAMI Northern Virginia Youth Leadership Council
4:00 PM ET – We’re Screened Out
Young Entertainment Activists
4:45 PM ET – Mental Health for a Just & Thriving Future
Erika Rose Santoro, Multidimensional Artist, Warrior, Teacher of Transformation and Healing, and Co-Founder, Keep A Child Alive and the We Are Here Movement
Christabel Reed, co-founder of Advaya and EcoResolution
Eva Borden, managing director responsible for Cigna’s Behavioral Health strategy and solutions
Aida Murad, Writer for Thrive Global, and the Co-Director for NEXUS MENA & Arab Diasporas and Mental Health Council
Joshua Freedman (Moderator), cofounder and CEO, The Six Seconds Emotional Intelligence Network
6:00 PM ET – Children’s Healthcare
Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha – Pediatrician,
Professor, Public Health Advocate & Author
Dr. Abdul El-Sayed – Physician, Epidemiologist, Public Health Expert, Author, CNN Contributor, Progressive Activist & Chair at Southpaw Michigan
Roxie Richner – Youth Organizer
Daphne Frias -Youth Activist, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine & Bloomberg School of Public Health
Ned Ketyer, M.D. – Pediatrician, SWPA Environmental Health Project
Jonah Gottlieb (moderator), National Children’s Campaign Co-Founder/Executive Director
7:00 PM ET – Brave Teens Film Teaser & PanelPrinciple Pictures & This is My Brave