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Student wins national award for community

As Patrick Hickey worked on his inspirational sticky notes early Monday morning, people were already talking about his award.

Patrick Hickey.

The Grade 12 student at Holy Heart is a 2015 champion of mental health under the guise of the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health.

“It’s pretty humbling, but it just gives you motivation to keep doing what you are doing,” Patrick said Monday afternoon during the official launch of the Metro Youth Mental Health Committee in St. John’s.

“I wasn’t expecting it. My teachers nominated me just before the deadline. It’s nice to be recognized and lets you know what you are doing is meaningful and not some arbitrary act of kindness,” he said.

Patrick won the award for his work over the past year in bringing mental health issues involving youth to the forefront.

He is co-chairman of the Metro Youth Mental Health Committee, sits on the Community Coalition for Community Health and will play a pivotal role in a provincial mental wellness conference later this month at Holy Heart.

Patrick said the youth committee is striving to foster the momentum that has been building around mental health awareness during the past year and will continue to address the concerns of young people until they cease to exist.

“We want to keep it going and not let the conversation die,” he said.

 “After we can see some sustainable success, we have a good group going now and are still growing. Once we see this is a group that will work effectively we will look to help facilitate other groups and  initiatives across the province,” said Patrick.

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