LYNCHBURG, Va. – Horizon Behavioral Health said it’s no secret – coping with the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on students and their mental health.
“We see a lot more anxiety in younger children; whereas with older children and teenagers it externalizes their feelings a little more, and that translates into more forms of aggression such as bullying and things like that,” said Januwaa Davis, preventive services program manager for Horizon Behavioral Health.
A 2020 study shows an increase in the number of Lynchburg High School students feeling sadness and hopelessness over the past five years.
“There are so many messages our young people are getting that are not positive, and so our goal is to instill hope in the community,” Davis said.
Horizon is helping the community bounce back with a new campaign. They are handing out free yard signs with positive messages, as well as medicine lock boxes and gun locks.
Health experts said they served more than 500 students in Lynchburg and surrounding counties during the 2021-2022 school year.
Now they are looking to encourage more students to stay resilient.
“The messages of hope and the ability to connect to those supportive environments is really important,” Davis said.
If you need help, you can call 434-477-5000.
Signs, free medicine lock boxes, medicine disposal bags, gun locks and additional resilience resources can be picked up at any of our Horizon Wellness Centers. region from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., according to the following schedule:
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