Bring Change 2 Mind attends Mental Health Summit


Shuvi Jha

On October 22, junior Sarvagnya Chodavarapu, senior Pooja Dandekar and freshman Sunaina Das attended the “Bring Change 2 Mind” High School Student Summit at the Lyft headquarters in San Francisco.

The summit, which was led by the “Bring Change 2 Mind” mental-health organization, was arranged in order to raise awareness about mental illnesses and dispel stigmas surrounding it. Excited by the prospects of learning new self-help methods, Das, a first-year member of the Bring Change 2 Mind club (previously known as Peer Counseling Club), decided to attend the conference alongside Chodavarapu and Dandekar.

“I went to the conference because I thought it would be a cool way to raise awareness for our club,” Das said. “Because we’re so new, very few people know about us, so we’re hoping to learn new ways to gain members and be more known and have better activities.”

Dandekar, a third-year member and president of the club, as well as Chodavarapu, a second-year member and treasurer, echoed a similar sentiment, stating that the content discussed at the summit will greatly help them in achieving their collective goals, one of which being to increase club members.

“The [summit taught] us how to become a better person,’ Chodavarapu said. “It also taught us how we can make our club a better place and more active on campus.”

The two officers also recall the breakout sessions in which attendees were split into smaller, random groups to discuss the different stigmas around mental health and perform activities related to self-help methods and self-esteem.

According to Dandekar, Chodavarapu and Das, these activities not only instilled a sense of joy within the members, but also educated them on the topic of mental illnesses. The members express that their major takeaway from this conference was that one should always prioritize their well-being before doing anything else.

“As you’re going along your way to accomplish great things, you should always make sure that you take care of yourself,” Dandekar said. “And that you are always aware of what you are capable of. Definitely don’t stretch yourself too thin, which, sadly, a lot of [MVHS] kids do anyway.”

Bring Change 2 Mind

Photos taken by Maggie McCormick.