Hawks and 'Silence the Shame' Inspire 100 Youth with One-Day Mental Wellness Clinic

Hawks Host One-Day Immersive Experience as Part of Mental Health Awareness Month
Atlanta Hawks
Atlanta Hawks

ATLANTA -– Earlier today, the Atlanta Hawks and Silence the Shame, Inc. hosted a Youth Mental Wellness COPE (Community Outreach and Practice Effort) Clinic as part of Mental Health Awareness Month. One hundred youth came together for a series of wellness activities that taught youth how to normalize mental wellness conversations and erase the stigma around mental health challenges. 


Facilitated by Silence the Shame, Inc. (STS), a non-profit organization committed to improving suicide rates among vulnerable populations, the clinic aimed to increase mental health literacy and access to behavioral health services, support positive youth development for at-risk youth and increase community engagement in supporting youth resiliency and social connectedness. The clinic also featured a fireside chat moderated by Silence the Shame Founder and CEO Shanti Das and RIAA Platinum recording artist Mooski as a panelist. Mooski shared stories about past traumas and depression, joining the U.S. Marines Corps before becoming an artist and how faith and music helps him maintain mental wellness. 


Various wellness activity stations included a jump rope and hula-hoop station, basketball free throw station, yoga station, dance choreography with the ATL Hawks Dancers and more. Youth also participated in breakout sessions and heard from Rapper and Songwriter Kai Ca$h and other special guests share tips for maintaining wellness.


“We are proud to continue conversations surrounding mental health with Silence the Shame for the Youth Mental Wellness COPE Clinic,” said Hawks’ Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility Andrea Carter. “Through our ongoing collaborative efforts, we hope young people will help themselves, support others and make healthy decisions.” 


In March, the Hawks and Silence the Shame announced a multi-initiative collaborative campaign dedicated to eliminating mental health stigma and reducing health disparities. To tip off this initiative, Hawks All-Star guard Trae Young and five-time GRAMMY® Award-nominated singer-songwriter Chlöe participated in a Teen Mental Wellness Courtside Chat and discussed their experiences with mental health and wellness.


“We are truly grateful to come together again with the Atlanta Hawks for a clinic that puts our young people’s mental health at the forefront,” said Shanti Das, Silence The Shame. “Having allies like the Hawks help to amplify our purpose, educate the community on mental wellness and healthy coping and promote suicide prevention.”


Silence the Shame creates and promotes culturally responsive content and increases literacy on social determinants of mental health and suicide prevention for vulnerable populations. Since 2016, Silence the Shame has been working throughout the music industry to promote proper mental health training and awareness among artists, employees and executives.


The clinic was held at the Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation and Aquatic Center. In January 2019, the Hawks unveiled their 23rd basketball court at the Center in conjunction with the King family as part of a larger effort to build 25 courts throughout metro Atlanta by 2020. 


To learn more about the Hawks’ work in the community, visit Hawks.com/community.


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