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CUSD Families and Community Members Come Together for Health & Wellness Summit

CHESTER, PA- April 19, 2023 Chester Upland School District (CUSD) families and community members gathered at the Health & Wellness Summit, hosted by the district and state Representative Carol Kazeem on Saturday.

The event, which was held at STEM Academy at Showalter, focused on centralizing mental health and wellness resources for residents. Guests participated in fun workout activities like yoga, Zumba, and other engaging fitness routines. The summit also featured more than 50 vendors who provided attendees with information, ranging from nutrition to fitness to mental health and trauma response and health insurance information.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Craig L. Parkinson expressed his enthusiasm for the community’s turnout and involvement in the summit. “It was wonderful to see our families and community members come together to focus on mental health and wellness,” said Parkinson. “I’m grateful that we were able to partner with Rep. Kazeem’s office. The event provided a great opportunity to learn about resources that can help support not just our students, but the community as a whole.”

According to the Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health, Black Americans are 20% more likely to experience serious mental health problems than the general population and are also more likely to experience socioeconomic disparities that can exacerbate mental health issues, such as poverty and limited access to healthcare. Similarly, a 2020 study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that children living in urban areas have a higher prevalence of mental health issues compared to those in rural areas.

These statistics are the very reason Rep. Kazeem wanted to partner with the district to host this event. “Mental health disparities have been going on in our communities for a while,” said Rep. Kazeem. “I’ve often heard that people who need help encountered issues accessing resources or simply didn’t know that help was available. I wanted to create a forum for people in our community to access mental health resources and to get a better idea of what services are available to them. I’m grateful to the vendors who came out to provide support to the families in the region and students in the Chester Upland School District. It was a great turnout.”

 The Health & Wellness Summit is just one of the many initiatives CUSD has implemented to support the well-being of its students. Currently, the district recognizes the importance of promoting healthy habits and providing access to mental health services to ensure the success and overall wellness of its students. The district would like to thank everyone who came out to the event, especially the vendors and health organizations.