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Tour Event

Louisiana’s Youth Mental Health: Coping Through Covid

If you joined us live or watch the archived stream for Louisiana’s Youth Mental Health: Coping Through Covid, please help us improve the development of future content and events by taking this brief survey.

What Parents & Teachers Need to Know

What is the new “normal” during a world-wide health pandemic? It’s a challenge we all face, but it may be an even bigger obstacle for Louisiana’s youth. From the loneliness and isolation of lockdown, to the sadness of missed milestones – many of Louisiana’s youth are facing unique challenges. Louisiana Public Broadcasting and Well Beings are teaming up for a community conversation that will help to address these topics and more. This interactive event will help Louisianians identify the challenges our youth are facing and offer valuable resources that move the discussion beyond awareness and toward recovery.

About the Host 

André Moreau, Louisiana Public Broadcasting 

André Moreau, Louisiana Public Broadcasting

Moreau’s career as a journalist spans over 30 years, working in cities across the nation. He has covered everything from hurricanes to earthquakes and presidents to a pope. He joined LPB in 2017 and currently serves as the managing editor and anchor of LPB’s weekly news program Louisiana: The State We’re In

About the Panelists 

Emma Benoit, Survivor & Advocate  

Emma Benoit became extremely passionate about suicide prevention after surviving a suicide attempt in 2017, the summer before her senior year in high school. At the time, she was a popular varsity cheerleader with a supportive family and lots of friends, but on the inside, she was filled with depression and anxiety, and had never told a soul about it.  Her attempt resulted in a spinal cord injury that left her paralyzed but helped her find faith and purpose; and propelled her on a mission to use her painful experience and miraculous recovery to help others. A few months after her attempt, Emma started the website and a blog to share her story and recovery journey, in an effort to help other teens who are struggling. In early 2018, Emma began working on a documentary film called My Ascension, that chronicles her recovery journey and advocacy work, while addressing the youth suicide epidemic.  

Ariel Encalade Mitchell, PhD, LPC/S, LMFT, RPT/S, Assistant Prof. of Counseling, XULA 

Dr. Ariel Encalade Mitchell earned a Ph.D. in Counselor Education/Research, a Masters degree in Marriage and Family Therapy, and a Bachelor’s degree of Science in Psychology.  She is a Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Registered Play Therapist Supervisor, and Certified School Counselor. Currently, Dr. Encalade Mitchell is an Assistant Professor of Counseling at Xavier University of Louisiana and the Owner/Director of Cognitive Solutions LLC, a consulting, counseling, and mediation practice specializing in child and family development.  

Dr. Encalade Mitchell is also the immediate Past President (2020-2021) of the Louisiana School Counseling Association.  

Tatiana Gonzalez Quiroga, Advocacy & State Program Director – NAMI Louisiana 

Tatiana Gonzalez Quiroga is originally from Queretaro, Mexico but now calls Baton Rouge, Louisiana her home. Tatiana graduated summa cum laude with a double major in International Studies and Political Science from LSU’s Ogden Honors College in 2020. Her passion for mental health advocacy led her to be one of the founding members of NAMI on Campus at LSU. She now advocates at a local, state, and national level for equitable mental health care. Tatiana also oversees and implements all of NAMI’s signature programs across Louisiana. 

LaShonda G. Williams, JD, Executive Director – NAMI Louisiana  

LaShonda G. Williams is originally from St. Martinville, Louisiana, but is now a resident of Addis, for over eight years.   LaShonda is married to Jermie Williams and the mother of four loving children.  LaShonda’ s passion for helping others led her to law school.  She graduated from Southern University Law Center in 2006 and manages a small law firm since 2008.    LaShonda joined the mental health field in 2016 where she not only advocated for her clients through her law firm but also became an advocate for the mental health world as a Housing Director.  Currently she is the Executive Director at NAMI Louisiana and truly enjoys the work that she does in and out of the office.    

Related Resources

About The Tour

The Well Beings Tour is making its way to cities across the country, hosted in partnership with local public media stations to present impactful experiences that connect audiences with mental health resources in the local community, strengthen community connections, and destigmatize mental health challenges. The Tour features moderated public discussions that share information and volunteer opportunities from local community and national organizations. The Tour is fostering new conversations about mental health through these local events — live or virtual, based on local public health conditions.

All Events is a mental health resource, not a crisis or suicide response website. If you are in crisis, or experiencing thoughts of suicide, please call or text the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988. The service is free and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.