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Ava Park

May 2024

Ava Park

A goal of the Connect-OC Coalition is to highlight the voices and work of young adults advocating for mental health and wellness. In this interview we speak with Ava Park who is student at Orange County School of the Arts. Ava shares with us a bit about how art keeps her grounded, helps her approach hardships more efficiently and her hopes to bring free art therapy based initiatives and resources throughout schools in Orange County.
Carolina Gutierrez

March 2024

Carolina Gutierrez

A goal of the Connect-OC Coalition is to highlight the voices and work of young adults advocating for mental health and wellness. In this interview we speak with Carolina Gutierrez who is student at California State University Fullerton, works as a Mental Wellness Peer Educator, and is currently a Connect-OC Intern. Carolina shares with us a bit about her choice to be involved as a mental health educator to express the importance of mental health and let others know that they are not alone.
Ravali Vallurupalli

January 2024

Ravali Vallurupalli

A goal of the Connect-OC Coalition is to highlight the voices and work of young adults advocating for mental health and wellness. In this interview we speak with Ravali Vallurupalli and she shares with us a bit about how family dynamics growing up has led her to pursue becoming a psychiatrist and youth mental health advocate
Accessing Basic Needs at Your School

November 2023

Accessing Basic Needs at Your School

Basic needs (housing, food, clothing, water, safety, healthcare, connection …) are essential to our mental health and well-being. Many of the colleges and universities here in Orange County have programming that can help with temporary and transitional shelter, clothing, food, diapers, and clean water, along with referrals to community partners who provide other basic needs-related services. Read more for a list of local college and university basic needs resources.
Britney Granados

November 2023

Britney Granados

A goal of the Connect-OC Coalition is to highlight the voices and work of young adults advocating for mental health and wellness. In this interview we speak with Britney Granados, a UCI student, and she shares with us a bit about her experience as a transfer student and its direct impact on her mental health. She shares with us her thoughts on how the community can help reduce the stigma surrounding mental health.
The Mental Health Continuum of Care

September 2023

The Mental Health Continuum of Care

A goal of the Connect-OC Coalition is to highlight Orange County agencies providing exceptional mental health and wellness service to the community. In this article we learn about Charlie Health's Mental Health Continuum of Care and how they ensure patients receive proper treatment throughout their journey.
The Multi-Ethnic Collaborative of Community Agencies (MECCA)  - Youth Drop-in Center Substance Use Services

September 2023

The Multi-Ethnic Collaborative of Community Agencies (MECCA)  - Youth Drop-in Center Substance Use Services

The Multi-Ethnic Collaborative of Community Agencies (MECCA) is looking to combat the increase in opioid overdose by giving out Naloxone (Narcan) Nasal Spray, Test Strips (Fentanyl and Xylazine), overdose reversal trainings, and referrals for free/low-cost treatments. They will be providing this through a Drop-In Center held every Wednesday, from 4:30 PM to 8:30 PM.
Natasha Naveed

September 2023

Natasha Naveed

A goal of the Connect-OC Coalition is to highlight the voices and work of young adults advocating for mental health and wellness. In this interview we speak with Natasha Naveed and she shares with us a bit about how art became her solace, offering comfort and a means of expression when she felt like there was little else to turn to. Additionally, she shares about how through community engagement and educational initiatives, she aims to destigmatize mental health challenges, fostering an environment where people feel empowered to seek help without fear of judgment or discrimination.
Project Why Podcast: Mental health and homelessness

August 2023

Project Why Podcast: Mental health and homelessness

Arielle Zappia speaks with Partners4Wellness/Connect-OC Project Coordinator, David Paddison, about the effects of mental health on society as a whole, and specifically about how mental health connects to homelessness.
Anita Okogbue

July 2023

Anita Okogbue

A goal of the Connect-OC Coalition is to highlight the voices and work of young adults advocating for mental health and wellness. In this interview we speak with Anita Okogbue and she shares with us a bit about her passion for community health education and a quote she lives by: “Everyone has a mountain, it might look small in comparison to your mountain but to the person, it’s as big as yours.”

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