Photo caption: Black Student Union (BSU) organizations from Phoenix Union High School District (PUHSD) attended South Mountain W.O.R.K.S. Coalition’s annual Youth Town Hall.
(PHOENIX – Nov. 20, 2019) – Eight Black Student Union (BSU) organizations from the Phoenix Union High School District (PUHSD) attended South Mountain W.O.R.K.S. Coalition’s (SMWORKS) annual Youth Town Hall on Wednesday, Nov. 5. The event was hosted at Brooks Academy in South Phoenix and was sponsored by Southwest Behavioral & Health Services, Black Wall Street Arizona and the African Diaspora Advisory Council of Arizona (ADACA).
The event was free and had over 125 attendees of which 90 were PUHSD high school students. The event shed light on the important public health issue of drug and alcohol abuse that heavily impacts our communities. During the event, the BSU teen leaders became aware of the issue of drug and alcohol abuse and were able to begin creating action steps and sustainable solutions for the future of their peers, their schools and their communities.
The BSU Youth Town Hall event featured:
- Excerpts from the film The House I Live In
- An unforgettable panel discussion of BSU Teen Leaders who discussed their reactions to the featured film. Dr. Felicia Ganther of Maricopa County Community College dynamically facilitated the BSU panel discussion
- Iya Affo, who served as the keynote speaker, discussing Historical Trauma and her own personal journey to resilience and the African Diaspora
- An interactive workshop that focused on healing, resiliency and connecting BSUs
The BSU Youth Town Hall Event was part of a larger project by SMWORKS and the ADACA focusing on creating programming activities that focus on youth and families. The Pavilion created will serve as an exhibit station on the grounds of the African Festival or at designated local historical venues around Phoenix.
About Southwest Behavioral & Health Services
Incorporated in 1974 as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, Southwest Behavioral & Health Services provides services in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, rural Maricopa County, Gila, Mohave, Coconino, and Yavapai counties. Our Mission: “We inspire people to feel better and reach their potential. Through helping people discover their strengths, we improve our communities.” SB&H offers an array of programs to meet the unique needs of the communities we serve. These include outpatient mental health treatment and psychiatric services including medication monitoring; assistance for persons with addictions; intensive inpatient care for persons in crisis; residential housing, in-home and supported housing services; prevention services, community outreach and school-based counseling; services throughout the lifespan for members with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD); and four opioid replacement clinics throughout the state that are working tirelessly to save lives and help alleviate the statewide crisis. More recently, integrated care and value-based contracting have been initiated to offer a more flexible and culturally sensitive approach to clients served and resolve the historical challenges of fragmented care. For more information on SB&H, please visit www.sbhservices.org.