April 21, 2022
Kim Hawkes
(850) 556-9799

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – This week, Florida middle and high school student leaders gathered together in Orlando April 19-21 to participate in Volunteer Florida Foundation’s Healthy Minds Teen Summit, a youth-centered event to discuss mental resiliency and the unique challenges impacting teens today.Florida’s youth leaders who participated in the Summit, sponsored by Sunshine Health, tackled tough subjects and engaged in meaningful dialogue about emotional intelligence, behavioral health and mental resiliency. The three-day event encouraged participants to develop leadership skills, deepen peer relationships, and innovate ways to help address the issues impacting today’s young people. “Being a teenager is hard enough. Add in a pandemic, and our young people are struggling through some intense and uncharted territory. But if you want to know what’s going on in a young person’s mind, just listen,” said Volunteer Florida CEO Corey Simon. “The Healthy Minds Teen Summit served to lift Florida’s youth, both their spirits and their voices, giving them a place to talk about their issues as well as helpful tools to work through them. As a community, we banded together to equip and motivate these student leaders to pay it forward in their home communities and positively impact their peers grappling with similar challenges. We are on this earth to serve others and I am immensely thankful to Sunshine Health and all our health care partners and inspirational mentors who joined together in service to Florida’s next generation and their mental well-being.”

Inspirational addresses to the Florida youth in attendance were delivered by the National Alliance on Mental Illness, NBA basketball legend Earvin “Magic” Johnson, and three-time Olympic gymnast Dominique Dawes. Sponsors of the event included Sunshine Health, Simply Healthcare Plans (“Simply”), Molina Healthcare, and other major providers and experts in health care and mental wellness.

“Mental health is integral to a person’s overall health and well-being,” said Nathan Landsbaum, President and CEO of Sunshine Health. “This summit gave us an opportunity to give teen leaders the mental health resources they need to care for themselves and each other. The teens left knowing that talking about mental health isn’t something to be embarrassed by – it must be as normal as getting an annual checkup. Sunshine Health wants to sincerely thank Volunteer Florida for allowing us to partner with them on this crucial mental health awareness event.”“Simply will continue to advocate for Florida’s children struggling with mental health challenges and equip Floridians with the necessary resources to combat the growing mental health challenges,” said Holly Prince, President of Simply. “Providing tools for our next generation of leaders is an important step in ensuring a lifetime of good health and well-being. Starting the conversation about mental health can be difficult. But with a professional like Magic Johnson, we are working to ditch the stigma and help families find the resources that can help.”To learn more about the Healthy Minds Teen Summit program, click HERE.


About Volunteer FloridaVolunteer Florida, established in Florida Statutes in 1994, manages national service programs and advocates for volunteerism throughout the Sunshine State. Volunteer Florida has evolved to also serve as the state’s lead agency for mobilizing volunteers and coordinating donations before, during and after disasters, including managing the Florida Disaster Fund. Volunteer Florida remains committed to promoting volunteerism in Florida and launched the state’s official volunteer opportunities platform, Volunteer Connect. Volunteer Florida delivers high-impact volunteer programs and opportunities that engage Floridians, transform communities and make the state a better place to live. For more information, please visit