By Susan Resko
June 30, 2022

As we round out Pride Month, a time set aside to uplift LGBTQIA+ voices, culture, and rights, I am reflecting on all the ways that Josselyn is supporting the community, because one’s mental health is so intertwined with how society views, accepts and respects a group of people with whom one identifies.

Earlier this month, you heard from a few Josselyn voices about their journey and their desire to advocate and support LGBTQIA+ people. Opening dialogue and inviting conversation to understand one another is critical – every month, not just during June.

Mental health can be precarious for LGBTQIA+ people, especially for youth – who have an attempted suicide rate that is four times higher than their peers. This is not because they are LGBTQIA+, but rather the pressure and stigma they can feel from society.

Josselyn feels strongly that we must continue to reduce the stigma around mental health. As part of those efforts, we were pleased to have an opportunity to participate in several Pride events through the North and Northwest suburbs this month.

We were invited to participate in Lake County PrideFest and enjoyed this opportunity to network and let people know that Josselyn is here for them. Our vision, Mental health for all, is alive and well.

Additionally, we received an incredibly warm welcome from the crowds that gathered for the Buffalo Grove Pride Parade. This was Josselyn’s first time marching in this colorful, loving parade.

Our culture marks time through these legacy months or days to focus on celebrating a people or a culture. I believe we should choose each day to celebrate one another. There has been so much darkness in the world. We can be a light for one another, celebrating Mental health for all, honoring the beautiful differences between us and in the process, discovering that we all have much more in common than we could have ever believed.

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