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“Friend to Friend” Student Wellness Conference

Stanislaus County Office of Education’s Prevention Programs Department announces the annual “Friend to Friend” Conference on Wednesday, Sept. 25 at the Modesto Centre Plaza, 1000 L St., in Modesto from 8:45 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Keynote speaker and social emotional health expert Dr. Julia Garcia will kick off the day inspiring students to celebrate their life stories and resilience in today’s digital social media era. Through poetry and powerful audience interaction, Dr. Garcia will remind students that they are never alone and that, “We don’t look like our stories.” Dr. Garcia will challenge students to speak up, stand up, and rise up together.

Following Dr. Garcia, there will be breakout sessions to provide students with the tools they need to cultivate resilience through healthy outlets as well as create positive change on their different school campuses by fighting the negative stigma surrounding mental health. Sessions will also educate students on the opioid crisis so that they are equipped to better help their community.

“This event offers a fantastic opportunity for students to learn more about wellness and become better equipped to be leaders in their schools,” said Vicki Bauman, Prevention Programs Director at SCOE. “We are thrilled to host this event for students in our region.”

The conference is expected to attract close to 600 middle- and high-school students and school staff from across the Central Valley.