Being a high school student can be a very challenging time for teenagers. Stress, depression and social anxieties can be overwhelming and many students often don’t know where to turn or how to ask for help.
That’s why Naperville Central junior golfer Aparna Ramakrishnan created Beyond Charity, a non profit organization that educates teenagers about mental health and coping strategies.
After founding the Beyond Charity in the spring, Aparna and fellow Naperville Central students, Luka Sereci, Sophia Hayes, Anna Schmidt and Kyle Rose came together to become mentors to the Redhawk community.
All of the Beyond Charity mentors are involved in athletics and clubs at Naperville Central, which has been a valuable experience in regards to finding a sense of belonging in the high school environment.
The stress of high school can be daunting on its own, but the uncertain nature of COVID-19 pandemic has brought on increased potential for stress and anxiety, putting the importance of mental health education further in the spotlight.
While the Beyond Charity is still relatively new, the hope is to expand the reach of the group’s mental health education into other schools in the area.
One of the most important goals of Beyond Charity and mental health organizations is removing the stigmas of depression and asking for help during difficult times.
For more prep sports content, visit the Naperville Sports Weekly page.