Celebrate Mental Health Awareness Month Every Thursday In May At SALA


This month SALA’s Parallel Cinema is themed Mental Health Matters – a collaborative program hosted by the LAPS Prevention Program, Los Alamos JJAB, the Los Alamos County Municipal Court, and the Los Alamos Public Schools Foundation.

The goal of this series is to raise awareness and offer strategies to improve children, teen, and family mental health. The first three Thursdays in May SALA will feature a film and discussion about the factors that support and present challenges to our mental health. The final Thursday will be hosted by a panel of local mental health support providers.

All events begin at 6:00 pm at SALA (Los Alamos Event Center) located at 2551 Central Avenue in Los Alamos.

Gratitude Revealed explores how to live a more meaningful life full of gratitude through intimate conversations with everyday people, thought leaders, and personalities.

Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER flips the script on stress, anxiety, and depression and sets out to understand these challenges in our current screen-filled society, and how we as parents and schools empower teens to overcome mental health challenges and build emotional agility, communication savvy, and stress resilience. Screenagers Under the Influence examines the impact of our digital age on teens’ decision making in relation to substances such as vaping, alcohol, drugs, and gaming. Released in March of 2023, this film explores the latest research, highlights the personal experiences of teens and families, acknowledges the changing landscape of the substances themselves, and offers
solutions for how we can best empower teens as they face decisions about what they will and will not be influenced by.

All three films are excellent conversation starters for families looking for ways to approach some of the most important and challenging topics of our day. The first 25 students who bring an adult to the films will receive a free and soda. Have you ever felt like an imperfect parent in a community of perfect parents? Does it sometimes seem like you HAVE to be a perfect parent because the stakes are so high? You are invited to come take a breather during this crazy time of year and connect with other parents and community members while learning some practical skills. The final event, “Take a Break: Connect and Learn about Children’s Mental Health”, is designed for parents and will feature guest speakers from the mental health field who will provide valuable insights and information a range of topics from brain states and the power of co-regulation, to naming and taming emotions, to recognizing the early signs of stress and anxiety. Elementary aged children can enjoy an evening during this event at Los Alamos STEAM Lab by reserving a spot at https://form.jotform.com/231176532909156.

All events are free to the public thanks to the support of the collaborating organizations. Each week there will be opportunities for individuals to share their experiences and learn from others. Attendees will have the chance to engage in open and honest conversations about mental health so that we can begin to address the stigma associated with mental illness and more effectively promote mental wellness.

Through this program, the organizers hope to create a safe and supportive space for individuals to come together and learn about mental health to foster a more resilient, connected, and compassionate community.

For more information, contact the LAPS Support Specialist Kristine Coblentz at k.coblentz@laschools.net or 505-663-2575.