Jefferson High School senior creates youth mental health awareness walk

Event started as a project for class, has since grown

San Antonio is hosting a youth mental health awareness walk this weekend to break down the stigma surrounding mental health.

SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio is hosting a youth mental health awareness walk this weekend to break down the stigma surrounding mental health.

The walk was inspired by Jefferson High School student Joseph Gonzalez.

“I feel like a lot of times the youth get overlooked and we are told to walk it off or that we are being emotional and that’s not true,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez is bringing awareness to mental health and is behind the walk called “SAISD into the light.”

“I want to have this walk so that I can stop the stigma and start a conversation. Let the students know, let the youth know, that it’s okay not to be okay,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez said this started as a project for class.

He held a small walk for the Jefferson community last year.

“Around 90 people showed up and people had come up to me after saying that it really meant a lot. Either they have dealt with mental health or people sadly passed away from suicide,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez is passionate about this topic and it is personal to him.

“I’ve dealt with suicidal thoughts, but I don’t anymore. But I still deal with depression and anxiety,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez is working with the district to host the walk this Saturday, at Alamo Stadium at 6 a.m.

His message to anyone that is experiencing difficult times is that you are not alone.

“People are there for you and people are going to help you,” Gonzalez said.


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Tiffany Huertas is known for her in-depth storytelling and her involvement with the community.