Mental wellness is promoted at the Planting Seeds of Change expo
Gila River Indian News
The Gila River Health Care Behavioral Health Services hosted the “Planting Seeds of Change: A Mental Wellness Expo,” on Saturday, May 4. The expo was open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and offered a variety of workshops and activities for all ages for hands-on learning about a variety of topics.
In previous years, events like this were usually held conference-style but this year they wanted to try something different.
“We wanted to plant seeds of change. We wanted to have a fun, hands-on learning event and grow in regards to mental wellness and what that looks like,” said Anna Pacheco, Prevention Specialist for Gila River Health Care Behavioral Health Prevention Program.
Pacheco explained that this is the first event of its kind and helps to open the doors of the building. Behavioral health staff and sponsors coordinated the event, over the past four months and hope to do it again next year.
The event was held at the New Beginnings Building located behind the Hu Hu Kam Memorial Hospital. Participants registered onsite and received a backpack with informational items, and had the option to attend any workshop of their choice at the “come and go” event. The event was designed for visitors to connect with the community and discover helpful resources. With May being Mental Health Awareness Month, the expo also promoted ways to recognize common mental health symptoms in teens and adults while growing a positive view on mental health.
The expo also included a healthy relationships workshop that discussed healthy family relationships and communication with painting exercises. A mindfulness workshop was also held and introduced exercises and techniques that could be used to help with anxiety, loneliness, depression, and discontent through meditation, aromatherapy, and even coloring as a stress reliever.
Suicide prevention, recognizing signs of opioid crisis, grief, depression, gardening, and healthy eating were some of the additional workshops.