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What Is the Power of Expression?

The Power of Expression (POE) is a mental health and suicide prevention assembly that aims to help middle and high school students recognize that they are not alone in their mental health struggles, and that hope and healing are tangible. The Ed Lally Foundation consults with each school and collectively selects the best option for this event, which could include a live presentation, a performance by the Big Infinite, a standalone video assembly or a four-part video series. We also offer live Q&A and breakout sessions that provide tools for the students to use in their daily lives, such as meditation and mindfulness practices and breathing techniques.

Why is the Power of Expression needed in our schools? 

The time is now to focus on the mental health needs of our young people. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among teenagers. According to the CDC’s Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Data and Trends Report, more than 1 in 3 high school students experienced persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness in 2019, a 40% increase since 2009. And 1 in 6 youth reported making a suicide plan in the past year, a 44% increase over ten years.  The mental health needs of our young people have only been heightened by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. And in December of 2021, the U.S. Surgeon General, issued an Advisory on Youth Mental Health Crisis. 

Who is the target audience?

The Power of Expression (POE) is geared toward middle, high school and college students.  Teachers and administrators are welcome to reach out if they are interested in learning more about the program.  We are in the process of developing a curriculum for elementary aged students. 

What do students gain from the assembly?

This program is not meant to be a one-time-only event. The program de-stigmatizes mental illness, helps students understand they are not alone in their mental health struggles, equips students with an increased mental health awareness and understanding, and introduces tools such as meditation, mindfulness and breathing techniques.  The program also introduces wellness tools, such as journaling, that students can put into practice in their daily lives. For more information, please find a brochure here.

How do I learn more?

If you are interested in learning more or how to bring the Power of Expression to your community, please reach out and contact us


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