Teenagers who are in the process of applying to universities in the US are often stressed, anxious and report having a low mood. It is not uncommon for the consultants that assist these teens to see depression, eating disorders, and maybe self-harming. The biggest question among the consultants is, “what do I do when I am dealing with a troubled teenager?”
On August 13th, 2021, CandleX’s mental health consultant, Melena Slaven, presented by Zoom Meeting to a group of Elite Scholars of China (ESC) consultants from all over the world that work directly with the students from the ESC program. ESC has successfully helped over 1000 students gain admission to the most selective colleges in the United States. The consultants were looking for ways that they can support their students both directly and indirectly. The consultants want to be equipped with the tools they need to provide empathetic emotional support and maintain positive relationships with the students. They also need to know when the situation is too much for them to manage and where they can send their students for help. CandleX provided them with the resources they needed to be able to connect with their students in a non-judgmental way and offered them the resources they needed to be able to refer their students to counselors, doctors, and hospitals that acknowledge and support those with mental health needs. Crisis hotline information was also provided.
Consultants were given information about some of the risk factors their students have as well as an overview of depression and anxiety. They were taught about the warning signs of suicide and how to talk about it without being timid. Most importantly, Melena talked about how to prevent some mental health problems by building relationships. She shared her favorite apps for mental health such as Clear Fear, Calm Halm, and Dare. These apps are free and provide amazing tools for people suffering from anxiety, self-harm and depression, respectively.
Other resources given to the consultants for them to use with their students were a self-care assessment and mindfulness coloring pages. The self-care assessment can be used to prompt discussions and to rate their students’ strengths and weaknesses in all aspects of good health and well-being (physical, psychological/emotional, social, spiritual, and professional). The mindfulness coloring pages are great for relaxation.
CandleX has been providing workshops to the students of the ESC program since 2015 and they are very proud of the ESC consultants for taking this new step this year to learn more about mental health and ways they can help their students in a proactive way. ESC knows that it takes a village to raise a healthy child.