May 19, 2022

How do you refresh and support your mental health? We asked students to answer this question through a variety of art forms including drawing, photography, illustration, and more.

Middle and high school students across the Commonwealth are taking home cash prizes this month for their exploration of mental health through art and creative expression in the third annual Massachusetts Association for Mental Health (MAMH) and Massachusetts Health Council (MHC) youth mental health art contest.

“We are delighted to have Massachusetts students share their artwork with us once again,” said MAMH President and CEO Danna Mauch. “The submissions were particularly strong this year. It’s clear that students put a lot of thought into the ways in which they support their own mental health and that of their peers and family.”

First place winners Kendall Belloise (Everett) and Sorina Condon (Scituate) were selected by youth judges – a combination of young adult mental health advocates and past winners. Students competed for $800 in prize money while keeping in mind this year’s theme: refreshing your mental health. The resulting drawings, paintings, photography, and more represented students’ own methods of maintaining their mental health, helping others, or reflection of why mental health is so important.

“Focusing on mental health for the youth is so very important – as our routines and activities return to normal, we have to do a better job of prioritizing mental health,” added MHC’s CEO David Martin. “This contest is a constructive way to engage students to focus on their well-being and all of these great young minds did a wonderful job!”

Condon, the first place winner in the high school age group, is a member of the “Bring Change to Mind” club at her school which tries to end the stigma around mental health.

“I wanted to participate in this contest because in art I had just finished an altered self-portrait about the severity of societal norms on teens’ mental health,” Condon said. “I wanted to convey the struggles that the media creates for teens as well as the ways that access to technology leads them to alter themselves into societal expectations.”

Middle School:

1st place: Kendall Belloise

2nd place: Keith Clark

3rd place: Amari Flynn

Kendall Belloise

Caption 1st place middle school winner, Kendall Belloise

High School:

1st place: Sorina Condon

2nd place: Ainsley Hayes

3rd place: Mckayla Vermette

Sorina Condon

Caption 1st place high school winner, Sorina Condon

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