Healing, Equity, Advocacy & Leadership (HEAL) Project

HEAL  aims to promote healthy behaviors and environments as a substance use prevention strategy for Latinx & Black Youth


Reduce 30 day substance use among 9th grade Latino students
Reduce drug related suspensions by Hispanic/Latino and African American students

Establish healing circles for African American and Latino students in middle school and high school in Visalia. Healing-centered activities build trust and community among youth, increasing emotional health and building positive peer relationships.

Establish Youth Leadership Coalitions (YLC) in Visalia high schools for African American and Latino youth to engage with their peers in the development and implementation of community solutions surrounding social justice issues, including the disproportionate suspension of African American youth and the high number of alcohol and tobacco retailers in communities of color

With the support of local Latino and African American Art Ambassadors, engage  Latino and African American youth in art expression, such as painting/graffiti art, spoken poetry, and rap/song and host an annual art showcase around the topics of social justice and health equity

Support Latino and African American youth leaders annually in organizing and leading an Annual Summer Youth Leadership Summit for Latino and African American youth each year in support of building resiliency, enhancing leadership skills and engaging youth in discussions on how to improve their communities

This project is funded by Elevate Youth California. Elevate Youth California is funded by State of California’s Department of Health Care Services through the Proposition 64 Youth Education, Prevention, Early Intervention and Treatment Account and is administered by The Center at Sierra Health Foundation.