PRINCETON, NEW JERSEY (February 19, 2019) – Attitudes In Reverse® (AIR™) proudly announces its 11th Annual T-Shirt Design Contest, which encourages students to submit creative ideas for communicating the importance of seeking help for mental health disorders.
AIR is a Princeton, NJ based nonprofit organization dedicated to educating youth and adults about mental health, related disorders and suicide prevention. Students are the target audience because half of mental health disorders develop by age 14 and two-thirds of disorders develop by age 25. AIR aims to eliminate stigma, fear and embarrassment about mental health disorders so individuals who experience symptoms can recognize them and be comfortable seeking help to prevent the
disorders from interfering with their lives.
“We started the Annual Student T-Shirt Design Contest in 2009 to raise students’ awareness of mental health and suicide prevention. When students wear the shirts featuring designs inspired by the contestants, they will spark important conversations. A student would ask about AIR and the conversation would naturally lead to more awareness, which, in turn, leads to a much greater likelihood that the student will pay attention to signs of mental health disorders in himself and others and take steps to get help when needed,” said Tricia and Kurt Baker, Co-founders of AIR.
“Even before the winning design concepts are selected, the contest helps build awareness by engaging students in developing creative ways to communicate our message. We strongly encourage health and art instructors, as well as other teachers and schools’ administrative staff, to invite students to participate in this contest. Students are the best resources for learning how to best communicate to them and their peers, and this contest is an excellent way to foster this essential communication,” added Shauna Moses, a member of AIR’s Board of Directors.
Entries into AIR’s Annual Student T-Shirt Design Contest are due by March 29, 2019. Entry forms are available online. All contestants will be recognized during the 8th Annual Miki & Friends Walk & Run for AIR on May 18, 2019 at Mercer County Park, East Picnic Area in West Windsor, NJ. Prizes will be an iPad for first place and a $50 gift card for second place. Winning designs will be printed on T-shirts that contestants and all volunteers will receive and will also be available to event attendees who donate at least $50. The designs also will be featured on AIR’s website, www.attitudesinreverse.org.
The Annual Student T-Shirt Design Contest was AIR’s first initiative. It led to other programs that have become well-known and in greater demand as mental health struggles are common and, due to lack of education and treatment, have led to the loss of numerous young people’s lives. To date, AIR has educated more than 72,000 students in middle and high schools and colleges, primarily in New Jersey and across the United States. Its Annual Miki & Friends Walk & Run for AIR™ event has consistently attracted more than 600 attendees. For more information about the annual event, including sponsorship and exhibiting opportunities, and AIR’s educational programs, please see the Programs tab on the AIR website.
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Attitudes In Reverse® (AIR™) was established by Tricia, Kurt and Katelyn Baker of Plainsboro, NJ, in 2010, soon after their son/brother, Kenny, died by suicide following a long battle against severe depression and anxiety. Their mission is to save lives by educating students about mental health, related disorders and suicide prevention. Since January 2011, they have presented to more than 72,000 students in middle and high schools and colleges in in New Jersey, New York, California, Washington, D.C., Vermont, Missouri, Minnesota,Texas and Arizona. AIR also offers Youth Mental Health First Aid instruction and includes the AIR Dogs: Paws for Minds™ program, bringing dogs into schools to help students destress and engage in the conversation about mental health. In addition, AIR trains and certifies Emotional Support Animals and offers a lunch-and-learn program for businesses. For more information about AIR™, please visit www.attitudesinreverse.org or call 609-945-3200.