In the wake of the tragic suicide of a classmate, Evan Young found a way to bring light back to his community. Evan organized a fundraiser, raising over $5,000 for his classmate’s family. Knowing this wasn’t enough, he didn’t stop there. Together with the help of some classmates, Evan started an organization for Mental Illness Awareness & Suicide Prevention (MIASP) in August 2018. MIASP aims to destroy the stigma surrounding mental illness by promoting open conversations about mental health and suicide awareness. The organization sells bracelets with the Suicide Prevention Hotline phone number on them and also organizes a yearly relay race in memory of their classmate.
MIASP was recently granted federal non-profit status. Because of his dedication to mental health awareness, Evan was recognized by the New Hampshire branch of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and was presented with their Youth Leadership Award. Evan was also chosen as a Northeast Credit Union Nice Catch winner. His story teaches us that even when tragedy strikes, there’s always a way to be kind and spread love.