PLEASANTVILLE PATCH: Pace Hosts Youth Action Convention for Area Teens

250 attendees at the Youth Action Convention at Pace focused on issues like cyber bullying and teen sexuality.

“Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself: Real Talk on How We’re Really Doing,” was the theme conveyed by PR executive and author Terrie Williams on Thursday.

Williams, founder and president of the Terrie Williams Agency, has worked with clients including Eddie Murphy and Chris Rock, as well as organizations including the NBA and Nickelodeon. She brought her message of strength and confidence to area teens at a Youth Action Convention at Pace University.

The day’s events focused on encouraging the approximately 250 attendees to focus on inner strength, even during tough times. During her keynote address, Williams revealed she was depressed just five years ago, and was able to overcome it by opening up and talking about her feelings.

“This year, we wanted to challenge the youth of Westchester to get themselves together mentally and physically,” explained Tianna Canady, program coordinator of the Family Services of Westchester’s (FSW) Youth Councils, in a statement from the sponsoring organization.

Williams, who also founded The Stay Strong Foundation, a youth advocacy group, gifted each teen with a copy of her book Stay Strong: Simple Life Lessons for Teens.

In addition to hearing Williams firsthand account of depression, the attendees enjoyed a presentation put on by the Big Apple Playback Theatre, which addressed “the issues of identity, dreams and goals, prejudice and social injustice,” according to a statement.

Another element of the convention was a series of several workshops led by other teens. Workshop topics included teen sexuality, healthy relationships, self-injury & self-harm, health/nutrition, media influence and self-image, dangers of alcohol abuse/underage drinking and cyber bullying.

According to Lynn Green, vice president of development at FSW, teens said they felt “less alone” and “more connected” at the end of the day’s events.

See here to learn more about the Family Services of Westchester’s Youth Council, which was founded in 2000.

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