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New Project Curason pa Curason

Heart-Centered Leadership Foundation is thrilled to announce a new project that aims to connect youth to each other and start open conversations around mental health.

Curason pa Curason (Heart to Heart) is a youth-empowerment project that promotes mental health resilience.

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to mental health concerns. According to a poll conducted by UNICEF, young people in Latin America and the Caribbean indicated feeling anxiety and depression, with the pandemic affecting their motivation to do every day activities. Of the participants in this poll, 70% indicated that they felt the need to ask for help, but 40% of those did not reach out for help. In Aruba, the local child helpline Telefon pa Hubentud indicated in September 2020 that children and youth are feeling under extreme pressure as a consequence of the pandemic. Among the concerns children and youth shared include stress, fear, boredom, the impact of the home situation, and suicidal thoughts. With this in mind, and with concerns mentioned by the local mental health foundation Respaldo, we took a proactive approach to assist young people in talking about what they encounter when it comes to mental health.

Curason pa Curason will promote the mental resilience of youth and young adults by including them in solving and normalizing conversations around mental health on Aruba.

We believe strongly in peer to peer support. That is why we are connecting our Heart-Centered Impact Coaches with youth to start a conversation on mental health: the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that can influence their mental health.

The project will consist of activities that engage youth in conversations about mental health, encourage solution-based processes, and build resilience towards healthy coping skills. Activities include our Impact Cafés, where youth will have a platform and safe space to discuss topics such as happiness, loneliness, anxiety, and more. Solutions they propose to address mental health concerns will be addressed in Impact Factory sessions, which empowers youth to lead activities or projects to make an impact in their community. Furthermore, we will offer teachers at participating schools an information session on mental health and how to best support their students, and a Heart-Centered Professional Development session that focuses on supporting their students in executing projects and activities around the topic of mental health.

The Heart-Centered Impact Coaches will also receive workshops and seminars to prepare them for their roles in this project. Among the workshops Heart-Centered Impact Coach candidates will receive are 'I Am' (values, principles), group processes and facilitation, and project management. This year, the Heart-Centered Impact Coaches will also participate in a 4-day personal development and leadership seminar called Transformational Leadership Program: Insight I. If you are interested in making a positive impact in the lives of youth and would like to be a part of this project by being a Heart-Centered Impact Coach, please click here for more information

Curason pa Curason kicks off this month and over the course of 2021 - 2022 school year we will work with 3 secondary schools in San Nicolas to empower 300 students between the ages of 14 and 17.

Curason pa Curason is made possible with partial financial support of Fonds 21.

Fonds 21 makes entrepreneurial, cultural and special social initiatives possible. The fund supports high-profile large and small projects in the field of art & culture and youth & society. In this way, Fonds 21 offers applicants the opportunity to realize their ambitions. You can read more about Fonds 21 by clicking here.

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