Be Free Lake is the first Youth Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Training program in Lake County and second to launch throughout Florida. The pilot program titled “You’re Not Alone” is focused on Mental Health Training for Youth.

The training program for students is being held at Lake Minneola High School. Presently there are 49 students at the high school participating in five training sessions. At the completion, participants will receive certification as Mental Health Student Ambassadors and will be able to help their peers who are experiencing periods of anxiety, depression, and sadness. The students will be making public service announcements throughout the school to help break the stigma of mental health issues. They will be better able to recognize and help those in need of help to appropriate adults and resources.

On Thursday, April 4th  at 6 pm, a graduation ceremony will be held at Lake Minneola High School for the 49 students who have completed the program

In addition,  a free Youth Mental Health First Aid Certification class for parents and adults is being offered.  The training helps adults recognize the signs and symptoms of depression, sadness, and anxiety among teens and how to refer them for help, and provide support and resources.  This national certification is valued at $190.00 but is offered free through federal grant dollars that Be Free Lake was awarded.

Be Free Lake applied and secured local funding from the Women’s Giving Alliance to bring and implement the project to help youth overcome depression and anxiety.

The organization received $15,505 from the Women’s Giving Alliance to provide this program to the student Pioneers for Free.