LOS ANGELES — Today, a coalition of non-profit organizations, including the YMCA, the Pop Culture Hero Coalition, and the Digital Wellness Lab at Boston Children’s Hospital, announced an exciting and important online event to address the negative mental health effects of COVID-19 on families, such as anxiety, depression and loneliness, and provide them with relatable tools to turn struggles into strengths, so children, teens and adults can become heroes for themselves and each other.
Event: Resilience, Empathy, and Healthy Screen-time: An Honest Conversation With Celebrity Guests Jameela Jamil and Joe Gatto
When: March 25, 2021 at 8:30pm ET / 5:30pm PT
The event will be hosted by actress Chase Masterson, founder and CEO of the Pop Culture Hero Coalition, and will feature meaningful and educational discussions with experts and authors on the topics of youth mental health, trauma and resiliency one year into our screen-dependent pandemic. The full panel of exciting discussion leaders can be found here.
“The global pandemic has exposed families to unprecedented levels of slow-burn trauma and stress, exposing the gap in resources for how children can manage and recuperate from prolonged levels of uncertainty and anxiety,” said Pop Culture Hero Coalition Co-Founder and Curriculum Director Carrie Goldman. “While we have spent the past five years developing a groundbreaking social emotional learning curriculum for kids, it’s more relevant now than ever as they start to recover from the difficulty and trauma brought on by the pandemic.”
“COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on the mental health of many people, but especially kids, teens and families,” said YMCA of the USA President and CEO Kevin Washington. “Social isolation, virtual learning, societal unrest and general stress and anxiety have all taken a tremendous toll on parents and children alike. We are proud to partner with the Pop Culture Hero Coalition and Boston Children’s Hospital to host this important national conversation. By bringing together celebrity champions of mental health and experts in psychology and youth development, we hope to raise awareness and provide families with tools that can help them recover from this pandemic and thrive once again.”
“The cacophony of opposing opinions on digital use and the impact of screens on children often leaves us confused, overwhelmed and wary,” said Boston Children’s Hospital Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and Founder of the Digital Wellness Lab Michael Rich, MD, MPH. “The Digital Wellness Lab is a hub for unbiased, scientific research and tools at your fingertips that parents, and all users, need now. Working together with organizations such as the Pop Culture Hero Coalition and YMCA of the USA is the perfect example of how doctors, scientists and teachers are coming together with technology innovators and content creators to build a digital environment that promotes individual and societal wellness.”
“Having worked with Pop Culture Hero Coalition for several years, including in the Be Kind campaign, I’ve seen firsthand the impact they make,” said actor Joe Gatto. “Broadening the reach of the Coalition’s work with this partnership is a powerful step for the lives of kids and teens. It’s really exciting to see them grow and be able to do so much more good in the world.”
To attend the free, live online event on March 25, visit www.popculturehero.org/honest-conversation.
About the YMCA
Driven by its founding mission, the Y has served as a leading nonprofit committed to strengthening community for more than 175 years. The Y empowers everyone, no matter who they are or where they’re from, by ensuring access to resources, relationships and opportunities for all to learn, grow and thrive. By bringing together people from different backgrounds, perspectives and generations, the Y’s goal is to improve overall health and well-being, ignite youth empowerment and demonstrate the importance of connections in and across 10,000 communities nationwide. For more information, please visit www.YMCA.org.
About Pop Culture Hero Coalition As featured on CBS News, Pop Culture Hero Coalition is the first 501(c)(3) to teach mental health and Social Emotional Learning skills using an intersection of evidence-based psychology and relatable stories from TV and film. Created by psychologists and educators, the Coalition’s groundbreaking Heroic Journey Social Emotional Learning and Bullying Prevention Curriculum is used in schools and YMCA USA. The Heroic Journey at Home: Mental Health During COVID-19 is an emotional support tool-kit for children, teens, and parents, available free of charge in English and Spanish. For more information, please see www.PopCultureHero.org.
About the Digital Wellness Lab The Digital Wellness Lab brings together global innovators, thought leaders, and supporters from technology to public health, neuroscience to entertainment, psychology to policy making. Together, they are creating the system necessary to produce and sustain a continuous stream of science-based information focused on the digital wellness of individuals and society. For more information, please visit www.digitalwellnesslab.org.
About Boston Children’s Hospital
Boston Children’s Hospital is ranked the #1 children’s hospital in the nation by U.S. News & World Report and the primary pediatric teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School. Home to the world’s largest research enterprise based at a pediatric medical center, its discoveries have benefited both children and adults since 1869. Today, 3,000 researchers and scientific staff, including 9 members of the National Academy of Sciences, 21 members of the National Academy of Medicine and 12 Howard Hughes Medical Investigators comprise Boston Children’s research community. Founded as a 20-bed hospital for children, Boston Children’s is now a 415-bed comprehensive center for pediatric and adolescent health care.
Sponsored by BeKindMerch.org
Pop Culture Hero Coalition’s #BeKind Campaign has led to the creation of this popular merchandise line, with 100% of proceeds going to programs to teach children and teens crucial mental health skills and end bullying in all its forms. www.BeKindMerch.org