San Antonio student organizes mental health walk to bring about awareness

Mental Health Awareness Walk held at Alamo Stadium Saturday

SAN ANTONIO – A Thomas Jefferson High School senior wants to break the stigma surrounding mental health, especially among teens.

What started as a school project for Joseph Gonzales has become personal for him.

“I’ve dealt with depression, anxiety for most of my life,” Gonzales said.

Talking about his mental health has helped him with his own struggle and he wants other students to not be afraid to talk about it.

“It’s okay to not be okay, people are there to help you,” Gonzales said.

This year’s Mental Health Awareness Walk was held at Alamo Stadium for the first time this year and more than 100 community members and students participated.

“It is very important to keep talking about mental health without talking about this we’ll lose more and more people,” student participant Jaime Valdez said.

Despite graduating this year, Gonzales hopes this walk will become a tradition and take place for many more years.

There are many resources available both locally and nationally for parents to get their children help if they believe they are struggling with mental health issues.

Below are some of the resources in San Antonio and the U.S.:

Local Resources

National Resources

  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255
  • Crisis Text Line: Text “SIGNS” to 741741
  • Disaster Distress Helpline: 1-800-985-5990

About the Authors:

Erica Hernandez is an Emmy award-winning journalist with 15 years of experience in the broadcast news business. Erica has covered a wide array of stories all over Central and South Texas. She's currently the court reporter and cohost of the podcast Texas Crime Stories.