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PM Coaching Day in Malden

September 6 - The NAN Project had a Coaching Day to help our Peer Mentors get ready for what will be a very busy fall. There was lots of 1-on-1 Comeback Story development, review of presentation skills and coaching on how to have a safe conversation around mental health.

Senior Peer Mentor Training Camp (days 5 & 6)

August 23rd marked the last day of our six week summer Senior Peer Mentor training!

We finished our Botvin LifeSkills Training with a lesson on relationship building. Thanks to Mike and Maria for not only introducing us to the language of collaboration, negotiation, and compromise, but for embodying these skills in the past six weeks.

Our Peer Mentors enjoyed 'Art with Alex' especially yesterday, taking some time to paint plant pots for succulents. These plants, just like our team, are incredibly resilient, and find ways to thrive and blossom even in the most challenging environments. Watering these plants will be a sweet reminder of both our time together and the importance of caring for oneself.

We owe many thanks to the Peter & Elizabeth Tower Foundation for funding this training. The assistance provided by The Tower Foundation has allowed our team to learn how to improve our support of those affected by mental health challenges.

To our newly graduated Senior Peer Mentors and to all who attended training, congratulations! We know you will put the lessons learned in training to great use in the schools this fall.

Senior Peer Mentor Training Camp (days 3 & 4)

August 2 & 9 - Wow is this summer flying by! We are now two thirds of the way through our training, having just completed the 3 day Mental Health First Aid certification and 4 out of 6 of the Botvin Lifeskills Transitions course. For our final two days, we'll have Lifeskills in the morning followed by afternoons of art programming with an amazing art therapist from Raw Art Works. Awesome work everyone!

Presentations at Mass Mentors in New Bedford

July 25 - The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented their Comeback Stories to 25 therapeutic mentors at the Mass Mentor office in New Bedford on Wednesday. These folks work with young adults from all walks off life, providing guidance and support. We hope to be back to present at their programs and engage the youth in discussions about alternative supports they can turn to when struggling.

Senior Peer Mentor Training Camp (days 1 & 2) - Malden

July 19 & 26 - On our first day of a 6 week Senior Peer Mentor summer program at Eliot in Malden, we covered Botvin LifeSkills Training (which will occupy the morning session of each of the 6 days of training) and followed it with the LivingWorks Education's safeTALK suicide prevention training in the afternoon. This helped reinforce the QPR training all of our Peer Mentors have been through.

On Thursday, July 26 we again started off with Botvin LifeSkills Training in the morning, followed by Mental Health First Aid USA (MHFA) in the afternoon. The Peer Mentors life skills covered so far include, how to cope with transitions, what is effective communication, and how to set realistic goals. The MHFA was the first of 3 parts, and covered what mental health concerns look like and how to respond and get someone help.

The trainers are doing a great job keeping everyone up and moving; a big thank you is in order to Tracy, Mike, Maria, Cathy, Sarah and Donna. This also would not be possible without the support of the The Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation and Eliot.


Peer Mentor Appreciation DAY!

July 10 - The Our Peer Mentor Appreciation Day was a resounding success! We enjoyed screening our very own 13 Reasons Why We Need To Talk About Suicide, played some NAN Jeopardy, chowed down on Chinese food, and battled at Mario Kart 64. Thank you to all of our amazing Peer Mentors for the hard work you do!😊


New Recruits! GIFT graduation in Arlington

June 21 - The NAN Project was out scouting new potential Peer Mentors at the GIFT (Gathering Inspiring Future Talent) training graduation. This DMH funded program run by Kim Bisset provides young adults with the tools to craft their Comeback Stories and become peer mentors. The majority of The NAN Project's Peer Mentors go through this program before taking our tailored training. We hope to recruit some of these amazing young people with powerful stories to come work for us!

Moving ahead at Framingham High School

June 15 - Today we met with a group of faculty from Framingham High School, including the principal, members of the Bridge re-entry & Phoenix programs and others who provide supports for the students. This was our initial foray into FHS, and the attendees were all super impressed with the presentations by Mike A, Onix and Sarah (her first time!!!). We can't wait to come back in the fall to bring The NAN Project's work to the student body.

Introductions at Milford High School

June 13 - The Prinicpal of Milford High School invited us to sit down with a few of their Staff in their Health Program to intrduce ourselves. We then had our Peer Cordinators share their Comeback Stories, and led a conversation about how we can work with their students once School is back in session. Thank you To all at Milford high School, for being so supportive of our mission.

Video Screening for Boston DMH

June 12 - We were invited to screen our video project 13 Reasons Why We Need To Talk About Suicide for the staff at Boston DMH. All who attened spoke of how this would be a great tool to combat the Stigma surrounding Mental Health, and were eager to utilize this in their practices. Thank you to everyone at The Department of Mental Health for making this a possibility

Peer Leadership Team Launch in Lawrence

June 12 - Today we sat down with a group of underclassmen at Phoenix Academy in Lawrence to help them launch their Peer Leadership Team. We came up with a name Nanix (Nan + Phoenix) and a mission: 1) To open up the conversation around mental health at their school; and, 2) Help their Peers access supports the ened for their mental health. Lots of great input from the students and we are excited to have a kick off event once school is back in September!

Malden What's Next Panel

June 9 - We were in Malden, Massachusetts where our two Peer Coordinators, Mike and Lizzie, were on a panel to discuss mental health and the available supports at the Malden Teen Enrichment Center.  They were joined by 2 students, a detective, and a lobbyist, with the mayor, chief of police and Representative Steven Ultrino in attendance. A great day with many positive connections made!

Stoneham High School, we're back!

June 5 - The NAN Project's Peer Mentors had outstanding, if long, day presenting to 4 of Stoneham High School sophomore health classes on Tuesday. These students were involved and had lots of thoughtful input to our discussions around depression, anxiety and how to access supports! We're always glad to be back at one of our most active schools and help promote mental health awareness. This is also where we filmed one of our most popular vignettes from  13 Reasons Why We Need to Talk about Suicide. Check out the Anxiety vignette HERE.

Phoenix Academy presentations in Lawrence

June 4 - The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented at Phoenix Academy in Lawrence, Massachusetts. We had a great response from the students in attendance and are now working to establish a Peer Leadership Team at this charter school. Thank you to Erin for organizing this event and to our amazing Peer Mentors Elli, Rob, Mike A, Lizzie and Jocelyn for presenting and leading the discussion afterwards!!!

Here is some feedback from the school Social Worker "Thank you again for yesterday and please send our appreciation to your staff! They spoke beautifully and showed some serious courage in sharing their comeback stories. I overheard several students telling their teachers about the mental health awareness group and some of the ideas we discussed, definitely generated some buzz!"

Presenting at Salem's New Liberty Innovation School

May 23 - The NAN Project's Peer Mentors were amazing on Wednesday, presenting for an hour and a half at Salem's New Liberty Innovation School. This alternative school within the Salem Public Schools serves students that have previously struggled in a traditional setting. We were given a VIP  tour of the school, and then introduced ourselves to the students, and had our Peer Mentors present their Comeback Stories. The discussions after revolved around how to tell someone you are struggling, who are the trusted adults you can turn to, and how to access supports if you or a friend is having a hard time. This was just the start. We're hoping to organize a summer GIFT Peer Mentor training here and return in the fall.

Hamilton-Wenham Senior Seminars

May 18 - On the last day of class for their Seniors, Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School asked The NAN Project to present as part of their Senior Seminar. Here, our Peer Mentors shared their stories of resilience, and led a discussion about Self-Care, the supports available in their communities, and anxiety around graduation and moving on to College. Thank you to the Staff at HWRHS for making this a possibility, and thank you to the HWRHS Class of 2018 for being an amazing and engaging audience. Congratulations!


Stoneham - Let's Talk About It...

May 17 - The NAN Project an open-community forum titled "Let's Talk About It.." at the First Congregational Church in Stoneham, MA. Ellen Dalton led a discussion addressing the Stigma surrounding Suicide and Mental Illness, and its effect on people. We then had our wonderful Peer Mentors share their Comeback Stories and led a discussion about what mental health issues look like for high school students, and how we can help young adults who may be struggling. Thank you  to all the enthusiastic attendees who made this night such a success, thank you to our amazing Peer Mentors, Thank you to Senator Michael Day for the spectacular introduction, and thank you to the Stoneham Coalition on Substance Abuse Education & Prevention for making this event a possibility!

Salem High School Health Fair

May 17 - We were given the opportunity to set up a table for the annual Salem High School Health Fair! Here we debuted our own version of Jeopardy, that was expertly crafted by our own Project Coordinator Kelley! The students were very receptive of what we aimed to accomplish, and enjoyed partaking in answering various questions regarding Mental Health for candy as a reward. Thank you to the staff at Salem High School for all the support we have received, and for making this event a possibility!

The Bromfield School

May 16 - The NAN Project had its first presentation to a middle school audience, when our Peer Mentors presented to the entire 8th Grade Class of the Bromfield School in Harvard, MA. This attentive group were very receptive of our mission to destigmatize Mental Health and promote Emotional Wellbeing. Our Peer Mentors explained what various Mental Illnesses look like in a young person, and the anxieties a freshman may experience in high school, and what supports to turn to. Thank you to all of our Peer Mentors who attended, and we greatly appreciate all the support we have received from The Bromfield School!

Salem HS and Hawthorne Program

May 15 - Salem High School had The NAN Project present to an enthusiastic group of students from their Therapeutic Program about what Depression looks like and how to respond to a Peer in Crisis. We then moved down the hall to the Hawthorne Program, a bridge program for reintegrating students who have missed time from school. Here, the Peer Mentors discussed Positive Coping Strategies and what supports they have turned to when struggling with Mental Illnesses. Thank you to all of the Salem HS Staff who made this event a possibility!

Back to Andover High School!

May 8 & 9 - The NAN Project was back at Andover High School to present to the juniors again on Tuesday and Wednesday. Over the past 3 years, we have had our Peer Mentors at the school to present to nearly every single junior, over 1,000 in total! We love being here and working with these amazing young people, including their Peer Leadership Team, S.T.A.R. (Students Together Are Resilient). Can't wait to be back in the fall!

13 Reasons Why We Need To Talk About Suicide

May 2 - We finally premiered The NAN Project's first movie - 13 Reasons Why We Need To Talk About Suicide - at the DPH Mass Suicide Prevention Conference! The screening as a huge success, and sparked great interest within the audience. The video is in response to the Netflix series; in it, we cover the primary risk factors that can lead to a suicide, we dispel some myths around suicide, provide a range of coping skills, and outline what to do if you are concerned about a peer. It can be viewed on our Youtube page and our website (after 5/17).

Thank you to all who attended, all who helped make this Video Project a possibility, and to our amazing Videographer Dan!

DMH Annual Provider Forum

May 2 - At the Annual DMH Provider Forum,  The NAN Project, in collaboration with Isabelle Cole from 13 Reasons To Fly, were invited to give an introduction to the Video projects that we have been working on together. We aired clips from both the 13 Reasons To Fly video, and our own 13 Reasons Why We Need To Talk About Suicide video. We then led a panel discussion about the videos and the messaging. Thank you to The Department of Mental Health for letting us share this with all who attended!

Presentation at CATS Academy

May 1 - We returned to CATS Academy in Braintree to have our Peer Mentors present their Comeback Stories to the Junior Class. We introduced ourselves, showed our Mission Statement Video, had our Peer Mentors share their Comeback, and led a discussion regarding Mental Health and Wellbeing. Thank you to the supportive staff at CATS who make this collaboration a possibility, and thank you to all the students who attended!

Teen Mental Health Summit

April 27 - The NAN Project attended the Teen Mental Health Summit at the DoubleTree hotel in Westborough. Here, We led a workshop titled Developing a Conversation Around Mental Health. Thank you to all who made this event such a success, and thank you to all who inquired about working with us in the future!

Presentations at Hamilton-Wenham

April 24 - The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented their Comeback Stories to the entire Junior Class at Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School! Due to time constraints, our PMs presented to the entire class then hosted breakout sessions with smaller groups of 30 or so students to lead discussions and Q&A regarding Mental Health and what to do if you or a friend may be struggling. Thank you to the entire HWRHS team for giving us this amazing opportunity!

Peer Mentor Presentations to Salem School Staff

April 23 - The NAN Project was given the opportunity to introduce itself, and have our Peer Mentors share their Comeback Stories to the staff and counselors from the four (five??) different schools from Salem. They were very receptive and are eager to work with us to promote Mental Wellbeing; we'll be back in mid-May to present to the students and get the conversation rolling!

Coaching Days at YouForward and YAVP

On the 18th Of April, YouForward Drop-In Center gave us the space to put on another Coaching Day for our Peer Mentors, and on the 20th of April YAVP did the same. These were great opportunities for our Peer Mentors to continue to work on their presentation skills, and to further refine their Comeback Stories. Thank you to all of our enthusiastic Peer Mentors who attended!

Mental Health Workshops at CATS Academy

April 17 - We were back at work discussing mental health concerns and how to get help for your peers at CATS Academy in Braintree on Tuesday. Our Peer Mentors did a great job opening up the conversation and responding to the questions posed by the students and faculty alike. We'll be back to present to the second half of the junior class in early May.

QPR training @ Bunker Hill Community College

April 18 - The NAN Project provided QPR Training (Question, Persuade and Refer) to an amazing group of Human Services students at Bunker Hill Community College last night. This suicide prevention program provides a set of tools that empower individuals to feel comfortable checking in with a friend, relative or colleague who may be in distress, asking the tough question "Are you thinking about suicide?", and where to turn for resources.

Peer Mentor graduation at YouForward in Lawrence

April 11 - The NAN Project graduated it's latest group of almost 20 Peer Mentors at the YouForward drop-in center in Lawrence. Congratulations to all these amazing young adults for completing this 3 day training!

Hamilton-Wenham RHS introductions

April 10 - The NAN Project presented to the entire faculty of Hamilton Wenham Regional High School on Tuesday. This was Nan's high school... it means so much for us to be back here working with some of the faculty that had Nan as a student. We will be back at the end of April for some Peer Mentor presentations and discussions about mental health and supports with the junior class.

Westfield High School community workshop

On Tuesday, April 3, The NAN Project presented Jon Mattleman and his workshop The Secret Lives of Teens to a group of parents and educators at Westfield High School. Jon did a great job engaging the audience and providing some useful tips on what teens are really thinking, what they fear, why they do not share more, and how adults can effectively support the teens in their lives. The presentation covered areas such as depression, suicide, 'acting out' behaviors, drug and alcohol use, and more.

Acton-Boxborough Health Classes

On Monday & Tuesday, April 2 &3, The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented their Comeback Stories to 16(!!!) health classes over two days. It was a lot of work, but totally worth it. The Peer Mentors engaged the students on the signs and symptoms of various mental health concerns; how to respond to a peer who is struggling; what supports are available in the community; and what coping skills young people can turn to when they're stressed out. A long couple of days, but super rewarding with tons of positive feedback from the students.

Peabody Health Fair

Peabody Veterans Memorial High School recently hosted a Health fair for it's students on the 27th of March, and The NAN Project was invited to attend and give a presentation. Here, we introduced ourselves as a project, aired our video explaining our mission, and had our Peer Mentors present their comeback stories. We then had a discussion with the students about how to spot signs of mental illness, and what supports they had in their community. Thank you to all of the students who attended for being so engaging and intuitive, and thank you to all on our team who helped make this event run so smoothly. We look forward to working more with the Peabody District in the future!

Filming for LGBQ vignette

On the 24th of March, the NAN Team banded together at the Eliot Community Human Services main office in Lexington to film a vignette for the LGBQ section of our video project, 13 Reasons Why We Need to Talk About Suicide. Here, we converted a room into a restaurant to set the scene for our film. Thank you to all of our Peer Mentors who lended a hand, and to our actors who worked vigorously on making this project a success! We plan to air the completed video project in May, so keep your eyes peeled!

Third Annual SuccessFest

On the 16th of March, the NAN Project was given a time slot in the 3rd annual SuccessFest conference. The workshop we ran was titled "Developing the Conversation around Mental Health in the Classroom." Here, we introduced the NAN Project to all who attended, aired a short video reiterating our mission, and had a handful of our Peer Mentors share their stories and answer questions that were asked of them. Overall, the day was a resounding success! We look forward to keeping in touch with the many new contacts we made, and keep the conversation going!

South Shore VNA Youth Health Connection

On the 7th of March, The NAN Project attended a South Shore VNA Youth Health Connection meeting and was given the chance to introduce itself to many new faces. We were greatly commended by all for our efforts in suicide prevention, mental health advocation, and stigma reduction. This was a large step for us in getting into more schools in the South Shore area. Thank you to everyone who attended, Youth Health Connection members and Peer Mentors alike. With every person who helps in giving strength to our cause, we break down the stigma surrounding mental health challenges and give help to those who may need it.

Q.P.R. in Stoneham High School

Exciting news! At the beginning of March, The NAN Project was given the opportunity to educate the Stoneham High School Peer Leadership Team in the ways of suicide prevention. We began the two day QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) training on the 1st, and wrapped it up on the 5th with all 25 Peer Leaders graduating. Now these students will have another set of tools to address any friends and family who might be in crisis to provide them with the hope and access to help they need. Congratulations to all and thank you for your time and enthusiasm!

TEMPO/Wayside Peer Mentor training in Framingham

February 16 - We completed our 9th(!!!) Peer Mentor training at Wayside's TEMPO program on Friday. The young adults developed their own Comeback Stories, underwent QPR suicide prevention training, learned to field awkward questions, brushed up on their presentations skills and much more. Good work guys!

Andover S.T.A.R. Peer Leaders to Museum of Science

On February 8, The NAN Project joined Andover High School's STAR peer leadership team (Students Together Are Resilient) at the Museum of Science to check out the "Many Faces of Mental Health" exhibit. It was great to see the 30 or so students having fun, while learning about mental health.

Sunny, Mike, Kayla, Jake & Holly

Peer Mentors present to CATS Academy, Braintree

On Friday, February 1, The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented to around 50 faculty members at CATS Academy in Braintree. They followed this with a frank discussion about how the Peer Mentors would like to see teachers approach students who are struggling differently. We'll be back to present to the students in the coming months!

January/February - PM Training at Tempo, Framingham

The NAN Project is training another great group of Peer Mentors at Wayside's Tempo program in Framingham Can't wait to see these folks in the schools telling their stories!

January 25 - Raw Art Works in Lynn

Our Night of HOPE at Raw Art Works in Lynn last Thursday evening was amazing! Congratulations to everyone in the HOPE (Helping Other People Endure) Group for pulling off this inspiring evening where they screened a bunch of short films and then hosted a panel discussion about mental health, in front of an audience of 150+!! We couldn't be prouder! They did an outstanding job fielding questions about mental illness, strategies to respond to a peer in crisis, and how they found the strength to talk about their struggles and resiliency! We also had 15 youth serving community organizations attend and distribute information about the resources available to young people and their families in Lynn.

January 12 & 18 - DA Opioid Task Force in Lowell & Medford

Ellen Dalton introduced The NAN Project to the Middlesex District Attorney's Opioid Task Force meetings in Lowell and Medford. DA Marian Ryan has been great about promoting community based organizations as a tool to fight the opioid crisis, which overlaps heavily with mental illness. We made lots of great connections and will continue to spread the word about mental health and the resources available in our communities.

January 10 - Stoneham High School

The NAN Project had a full day of presentations to over 100 students in 5 health classes at Stoneham High School. Great work by Mikes A & C, Kayla, Lizzie and first time presenter, Lexus! After every class, students came up to ask questions and thank these amazing Peer Mentors. Such a fulfilling experience and can't wait to come back for more in the spring.

Thursdays in December - RAW, Lynn

The NAN Project has been working on posters related positive messaging around mental health in preparation for our health fair at Raw Art Works in January. This has been an awesome experience brainstorming ideas, carving images out of linoleum, and learning to work with printing presses. So much fun for such a good cause! Check out some of the examples below.

December 18 - Phoenix Academy, Lawrence

The NAN Project and Jon Mattleman provided an afternoon Professional Development workshops for a group of faculty at Phoenix Academy in Lawrence around the signs and responses to a student who may be in crisis. Jon always does an amazing job at these workshops getting the audience involved and keeping them engaged, even on a Friday afternoon!

December 15 & 18 - Andover

The NAN Project had two full days of presentations to over 200 students in 7 health classes at Andover High School.  The students at were incredibly engaged and we had lots of good discussion around how to promote mental health awareness at the school and improve the social-emotional well-being of the student body. Our Peer Mentors get better and better every time they go out and present their Comeback Stories! Great work folks!

December 14 - Peer Mentor Graduation at STEPS

The NAN Project held a graduation for our 8th Peer Mentor class at STEPS in Arlington. This was an enthusiastic group with some amazing Comeback Stories that will really resonate with the students. The intensive 3 day training covered classroom presentation skills, how to field awkward questions, and lots of work on their Comeback Stories. These Peer Mentors also were certified in QPR which covers recognizing the signs and risks of a peer in crisis, and how to get them to the trusted adult and supports they need.

October 12, 17 & November 28 - Andover

The NAN Project just completed a three day QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) suicide prevention training for a group of Peer Leaders at Andover High School. QPR training will provide this group of students with additional tools so they can support their peers in crisis, as well as empower them to better recognize the signs and risks of a student who may be struggling with a mental health concern. We finished the training with a session focused on role playing how to ask The Question- "Are you ok?" "Are you thinking of hurting yourself?" "Have you contemplated suicide?" These young adults did an amazing job with such difficult subject matter.

November 21 - Mass Mental Health Center, Boston

The NAN Project graduated our 7th class of Peer Mentors, this time from a training at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center in Boston! With several new school systems asking for our Peer Mentors to come present their comeback stories over the next couple months, these guys will be busy. I can’t wait to get to work with this amazing group and all of our other team members to provide mental health awareness, education and support to students across the Commonwealth.

Thursday, November 16 - Phoenix Academy, Lawrence

The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented their Comeback Stories to a group of 20 students at Phoenix Academy and opened up a dialogue with them around how to access their mental health supports and develop coping skills. We'll be back in a couple weeks to help set up a Peer Leadership Team to carry out ongoing mental health awareness activities and normalize the conversation!

Thursday, November 2 - Raw Art Works, Lynn

The NAN Project had a full day at Raw Art Works, starting with filming Gladys presenting her incredible spoken word piece for our movie project - 13 Reasons Why We Need To Talk About Suicide. That evening we worked with our amazing group of Peer Mentors on improving their Comeback Stories, as well as acquainting ourselves with the letterpress we will be using for our "Breaking down Stigma" poster campaign.

Thank you to the Essex County Community Foundation for the grant that made possible this project - "There is Help & There is Hope: Mental Health Awareness through Art".

October 6, 20, 27 - YouForward, Lawrence 

The NAN Project graduated our 6TH!!! class of Peer Mentors at YouForward in Lawrence. Super excited to work with these young adults as the help open up the conversation around mental health in local classrooms!

October 25 - Mass PRA Conference, Marlborough

The Nan Project workshop on how to improve the conversation around mental health at today’s Mass Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association Conference was received extremely well. Our amazing Peer Mentors did a great job talking about their experiences working in local schools to improve the conversation around mental health. Lots of good feedback and discussion with representatives from the many agencies and schools there.

October 19 - A Night for NAN, Danvers

Thank you so much to everyone who came out to our incredible Night for NAN!!!! It was a wonderful evening punctuated by Ellen Dalton's beautiful intro to The NAN Project, presentations by 3 of our amazing Peer Mentors - Mike, Lizzie and Kayla - followed by some warm words from Senator Joan B. Lovely. The support and love in the room was palpable! Here are some pics, but more are to come.

Thank you to the amazing sponsors that made this evening happen -DanversportCapital Lease Group, Ltd.Starkweather & Shepley Insurance Brokerage, Inc.The MENTOR NetworkRopes & GrayeHana LLCTelco ExpertsAAFCPAsTier1Net Inc.W.B. MasonBank of America and KYOCERA Document Solutions America!


Thursday, October 5 & 12 - RAW, Lynn

We have kicked off our new collaboration with RAW in Lynn, a project titled "There is Help & There is Hope: Mental Health Awareness through Art" - an initiative made possible with the support of Essex County Community Foundation. We will be working with this amazing group of young people to promote mental health initiatives throughout the Lynn community by screening movies, encouraging  student led awareness campaigns and hosting a mental health fair. We are so excited to be working with this creative, inspiring group for the next several months.

Friday, September 29 - YAVP, Arlington

We had another awesome Coaching Day with our amazing Peer Mentors on Friday at the Young Adult Vocational Program in Arlington on Friday. Everyone is geared up and ready for the new school year! Can't wait to get back into the classrooms.

September 15, 21, 22 & 23 - Raw Art Works, Lynn

The NAN Project just graduated our 5th group of Peer Mentors in a new collaboration with RAW. We are so excited to work with this amazing group of students on our upcoming program - "There is Help & There is Hope: Mental Health Awareness through Art" - an initiative made possible with the support of Essex County Community Foundation. This project will continue over the next three months, with the final outcome being an art focused mental health awareness fair for the Lynn community.

Thursday, August 31 - CATS Academy, Braintree

Ellen Dalton & Jon Mattleman did an outstanding job today providing a morning of professional development to the faculty of CATS Academy in Braintree today. The staff were engaged and very receptive to the training and we will definitely be back to work with both educators and students in the coming school year.

August 15, 17 & 24 - Young Adult Vocational Program, Arlington

🌟Congratulations🌟to our newest group of graduates from The NAN Project Peer Mentor Training! We look forward to further develop the skills which this wonderful group of PMs embody. Through their dedication and commitment to TNP, it is evident that they are all going to make big changes in this world. We look forward to working with you all!!

Friday, July 21 - Young Adult Vocational Program, Arlington

The NAN Project just completed another great coaching day at the Young Adult Vocational Program in Arlington, Massachusetts today with our amazing Peer Mentors! The young adults brushed up on telling their Comeback Stories, fielded questions they might get from students, and developed strategies to get the conversation around mental health going in the classroom. These folks are truly inspiring!

Friday, June 30 - YouForward, Lawrence

On Friday, The NAN Project graduated another amazing group of young adults who will now join our wonderful team of Peer Mentors! Thank you to everyone who took part in the training and especially to YouForward and the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health for sharing their space and Cummings Foundation for all their support!

Thursday, May 18 - Urban Science Academy, West Roxbury

The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented their Comeback Stories to the school's Student Support Team. Next school year, we will be presenting in the health classes and hope to start a Peer Leadership Team within the school to promote mental health awareness and emotional well-being.

Monday & Tuesday May 8 & 9, 2017 - Andover

The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented their Comeback Stories to 8 health classes over two days - 150+ students and then engaged the students in some great discussions on how to improve culture of emotional well-being and turn up the conversation around mental health at AHS. A very rewarding and powerful couple of days, to be followed up by additional mental health awareness activities and suicide prevention training for groups within the school.


Friday April 28 - Teen mental health summit, Westborough

Rachely, Mike and Kayla knocked it outta the park today at the 3rd Annual #TeenMentalHealthSummit today! They had the audience captivated and the discussion flowing during The NAN Project's workshop "Developing a Conversation around Mental Health".

Wednesday April 26, 2017 - West Roxbury Academy

The NAN Project's Peer Mentors presented their Comeback Stories to the Student Support Team at West Roxbury Academy, introducing them to The NAN Project and discussing ways to implement our programs throughout the school. They were very receptive, and we will now be providing professional development for the staff around suicide prevention to kick of the upcoming school year!


The NAN Project presented to 6 classes at Peabody Veterans Memorial High School's Senior Health Day. The students were very open and frank when discussing the additional supports they would like to see within the school and how they find the health center quite helpful. One of the students even shared a poem she had written about her own struggles with mental health challenges. Overall the presentations went extremely well and got the conversation around mental health and emotional well-being started at the High School. A great start to what we hope will be a long-lasting partnership.


Today The NAN Project presented to over 200 students at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School. We had great conversations with young people who had wonderful ideas about things they would like to see in their school. Many students were interested in continuing the conversation about mental wellness and The NAN Project will now help them start a Peer Leadership Group within the school. They definitely left with the message that there is help and there is hope!


Thursday MARCH 23, 2017 - Malden

Today The NAN Project assisted the Peer Leadership Team of students within Malden High School - The Generation for Hope - in putting on its first major event. They screened a short video about mental health challenges to a group of over 30 students and staff in the library and several Peer Mentors presented their Comeback Stories. The goal was to start an ongoing conversation around mental health and emotional well-being and improve awareness in the school and get more students involved in the group, which we definitely did. We'll keep spreading the message of how important emotional well-being is in the coming months.


The NAN Project had a productive morning working with an amazing group of Peer Leaders at Andover High School. The students had some awesome ideas on how to improve mental health awareness and ensure access to resources for students in need at the high school. This was the first meeting of this group and The NAN Project will be back in April to put together a concrete plan for moving forward. Thank you to all who took part and to Reading Cooperative for funding this initiative.



The NAN Project had a super busy day on Thursday at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School with 4 Peer Mentors presenting their Comeback Stories to 8 freshman health classes, totalling over 200 students! The students were amazing and had some great suggestions on how to improve the culture of emotional wellbeing within the school. Great job to our Peer Mentors and we look forward to returning in the next couple of weeks.



The NAN Project had an amazing time at Stoneham High School on Thursday. First we met with a group of student Peer Leaders and made plans for a week of stress reduction activities at the end of the year, and discussed bringing our Peer Mentors to present in the sophomore health classes. Next, we introduced The NAN Project to the entire school staff, and two of our Peer Mentors knocked it out of the park with their Comeback Stories. Great job and awesome enthusiasm from all the students, educators and The NAN Project's Peer Mentors! We're excited to head back after the break for more mental health awareness work.

Rachely presenting her Comeback Story


Skylar & Ellen in Stoneham

Tuesday FEBRUARY 7, 2017 - STONEHAM

The NAN Project presented to the Stoneham School Council, a group made up of teachers, administrators, students and parents. We received some encouraging feedback regarding our initial work in the high school and hope to use this momentum to catapult our Peer Mentors into the health classes by the end of the year.

Wednesday february 1, 2017 - stoneham

A great job by our Peer Mentors presenting their Comeback Stories to a class of 35 peer leaders at Stoneham High School! Our only problem was that we ran out of time before answering all the students' questions, so… we’re coming back in 2 weeks! Can't wait to put together a concrete plan on how to improve the culture of emotional well-being in the school and develop a self sustaining group within the school. Awesome work from 3 of our amazing Peer Mentors – Anna (her first presentation!!), Skylar, and Cory.

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Friday JANUARY 27, 2017 - Peer mentor training

Our second round of Peer Mentor training at the Arlington Young Adult Vocational Program kicked off today. Led by our trainer, Kim Bisset, the young adults in this new group were super attentive, engaging and enthusiastic. Can't wait to get these guys and gals into the schools to tell their Comeback Stories!


The NAN Project will be conducting its second round of Peer Mentor training for a new group of young adults with lived experience a the Young Adult Vocational Program in Arlington On January 27, February 3, and February 10. If you are interested in taking part, you can apply to become a Peer Mentor HERE.

Wednesday January 27, 2017 - WESTFIELD

It was a full day for two of our superstar Peer Mentors, Skylar and Rachely, with presentations to the guidance and health staff in Westfield and then to the Westfield Youth Coalition! It was a long way to go, but totally worth it. Both groups were blown away by the Comeback Stories, and the discussions after showed the enthusiasm our Peer Mentors can elicit. We'll be back to Westfield later this spring, hopefully getting into the classrooms to reduce the stigma around mental health concerns and improve the culture of emotional well-being throughout the Westfield schools. Good job Skylar and Rachely!

Friday January 20, 2017 - Stoneham

Awesome job done by 3 of our Peer Mentors - Cory, Cristiana, & first timer Michael! - presenting their Comeback Stories to a captivated room full of Health and PE staff at Stoneham High School! They were so impressed with these young adults that our discussion about how to improve the culture of emotional well-being and mental health awareness lasted over two hours. We'll be back later this month to present to the School Council, provide professional development for all the educators, and finally to present to the students themselves. Good job to all who took part in this important first step!

Thursday December 15, 2016 - Lynn

The NAN Project presented an evening of Improving the Culture of Emotional Well-being for our Young Adults at Raw Art Works in Lynn.  Our Peer Mentors told their Comeback Stories to the young adults, their families and members of the community at RAW and had a frank discussion about how to respond to peers that are struggling with a mental health concern. We plan to return in the new year to provide a full QPR training on the signs, risks and responses to someone going through a mental health crisis. RAW is an amazing organization that has provided therapy through art to thousands of youth in the Lynn community for the past 25 years. Learn more about RAW here

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Friday December 2, 2016 - andover

To close out a busy week, The NAN Project sponsored Jon Mattleman to provide an afternoon of professional development to the entire staff of Andover High School around improving the culture of emotional well-being. He and Ellen did amazing jobs of educating the educators and keeping them engaged, even on a Friday afternoon.

Thursday December 1, 2016

Another busy day for The NAN Project's Peer Mentors, this time at Malden High School. These guys spent the afternoon working with a group of students brainstorming how to improve emotional well being in the school and promote the mental health resources available to students. Awesome job by both the Peer Mentors to get the conversation going and the students who took that conversation and ran with it. Can't wait to go back next week!

Monday & Tuesday December 28 & 29, 2016

Amazing work by our 6 Peer Mentors presenting to 8 health classes (84 minutes each!!) at Andover High School over the last two days! All of our Peer Mentors (sorry, we only have pics of 3) did an amazing job telling their Comeback Stories to the students and following up with great conversations about how we can improve mental health awareness and the culture of emotional well-being in the community. We already have a group of students interested in establishing a group to keep the ball (and conversation) rolling at Andover High School! Thank you to the health staff, our Peer Mentors and everyone else who made the past two days such a success! We'll be back on Friday providing emotional wellness training to the entire school staff.

Ellen, Cory, Skylar, Christiana & Lilly (front)

Ellen, Cory, Skylar, Christiana & Lilly (front)


 Tuesday November 8, 2016

The NAN Project provided a 4 hour training for the Everett School System's Health and PE staff around mental health awareness. We started the morning with an introduction to The NAN Project and a discussion around what the school system is currently doing to promote the emotional well-being of their students. This was followed by a QPR training (Question, Persuade, Refer) which educates participants on the signs and responses to suicidal behavior, as well as how to ask the difficult question of someone who might be at risk. Finally, our Peer Mentors once again captivated the audience with their Comeback could hear a pin drop during the presentations. The staff were incredibly impressed with these young people and the courage they showed. We hope our next step here will be into the classrooms to address the students directly, and after this workshop, we have no doubt that the attendees will be amongst our biggest champions in this push.

Peer Mentors telling their Comeback Storiesimg_7104

Thursday OCTOBER 27, 2016

The NAN Project had 3 Peer Mentors present their Comeback Stories to a group of over 30 Malden High School students and staff, with another 3 Peer Mentors providing support and some great input during the vibrant discussion that followed the presentation. Afterwards, over 15 students signed up to help develop a Peer Leadership Team within their school, exemplifying the powerful response students have to hearing the Comeback Stories, and The NAN Project was asked to return ASAP to present to additional students!


The NAN Project graduated its first group of 20 Peer Mentors after they completed their 3 days of training with Kim Bisset. We are extremely proud of these young adults who will now be able to go into schools and tell their Comeback Stories to students and get the conversation started around mental health and suicide prevention. This was just the first of what we hope will be many similar trainings as The NAN Project grows and recruits additional young people to help spread the word about the importance of mental wellness.

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FRIDAY, September 16 2016

PEER MENTOR Training with Kim Bisset

The NAN Project began training our first group of Peer Mentors! These young adults with lived experience were trained to tell their stories in a meaningful, constructive manner to high school students, offering a path of hope for those who might be struggling. To apply to become a Peer Mentor, click HERE.

THURSDAY October 20, 2016

A Special Evening to Introduce The NAN Project

The NAN Project hosted an evening of food, drinks and laughter for friends, family and supporters of The NAN Project with all proceeds going towards increasing awareness around mental health and promoting suicide prevention programs in Massachusetts High Schools.

Friday AUGUST 26, 2016

The NAN Project attended the graduation ceremony for young adults who recently completed their GIFT (Gathering & Inspiring Future Talent) training today with Kim Bisset. A remarkable group who presented their stories of struggling with mental health and other adversities, and how they found their paths to hope and recovery. Not a dry eye in the crowd. Most will start training to become the first group of Peer Mentors for The NAN Project in just 3 short weeks!

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ThursdaY JUNE 30, 2016

Day 2 of The NAN Project's training for the Everett School System's principals, department heads, and other senior administrators featuring 1) Mental Health 101 training 2) a panel discussion with parent partners on Mental Health in the Classroom: The School Experience from the Parents’ Perspective, and 3) a presentation by Jon Mattleman - Depression, Anxiety and Suicidality: Risks, Signs, Responses and Resources.  Great training from the folks at Eliot, panel discussion with our parent partners, and workshop with Jon Mattleman...and a great view of Boston taboot.

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Wednesday June 29, 2016

The NAN Project's first workshop for the Everett School system's senior administrators took place today, with Beth Pinals leading the interactive training program on how to build a culture of emotional well-being in the school community.

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Thursday May 12, 2016

The NAN Project presented Jon Mattleman's "The Secret Life of a MA Teen" to parents and teachers at Everett High School, including the senior administration of the Everett School system. The event was attended by over 100 parents, teachers and members of the Everett Community. The "High-Energy Presentation" focused on effective ways to help parents, educators and caregivers understand and assist adolescents as they traverse a difficult period in their lives, with the goal of creating a culture of mental wellness in our young adults.

Jon Mattleman presenting at Everett High School


The NAN Project took part in the Salem High School Teen Health Fair and the Wilmington Behavioral Health Fair, where Ellen Dalton presented in a breakout session about the mental health needs of young people and the benefits of using a peer-to-peer model to reduce the stigma around mental illness among high school students.

Ellen Dalton in Wilmington

Jake at the Salem High Teen Health Fair


The NAN Project met with WBUR's Lynn Jolicoeur at the Massachusetts Coalition for Suicide Prevention's State House Day where she was accepting an award for her amazing 15 part series Suicide: A Crisis in the Shadows. If you haven't listened to it yet, check it out here

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If you need help and want to talk to someone, call:

Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1-800-273-TALK (8255)

For the Crisis Text Line, text "Listen" to 741-741

For the Samaritans, Call or Text (877)870-4673

For immediate crisis evaluation call the Emergency Services Program / Mobile Crisis Intervention at 1-877-382-1609 & enter your zip code; you will get the phone number of the closest ESP/MCI that serves you.

If you are in immediate danger, please call 911