St George’s Charity offers hope to teenagers struggling with mental health with iTech


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ST GEORGE – When Christy and Ryan Holt both began to struggle with depression and marital problems, they knew they couldn’t hide from the dangers of not addressing their emotional health.

The couple tried medication to deal with their anxiety but found they were still struggling with depression and anxiety more than ever. That’s when they begin to learn more about the importance of emotional intelligence and awareness.

“In our society, we’re taught to avoid, push away, ignore, and numb our experiences of people,” says Christy Holt. “We’re human, and it’s our emotions that make us human. And if you’re appreciating and numbing emotions, you’re not really living.”

Negative mental health didn’t just affect Holts; It affected their children. Raising four children has not been an easy task, especially with the pandemic and unhealthy use of social media increasing over the years, added Christy Holt.

The couple wanted to create a safe and healthy environment for young people across the country to address their mental health.

AI to measure emotional state by sound

In the year In 2017, Holtz started MECA projectAccording to its website, it is a “non-profit organization that helps young adults thrive mentally and emotionally.” Just last year, the company released the artificial intelligence company Vibeonix To provide additional mental health resources for teenagers and young adults.

To boost the project’s resources, the pair worked last year to bring AI technology to help teenagers and adults understand their mental and emotional states.

The couple’s startup AI company Vibenix uses voice to gauge a person’s emotional state and then understand what they’re feeling based on their tone of voice. All one has to do is speak into the free app for less than 15 seconds, says Chrystia Holt. The person then receives a percentage score that measures their mood.

The technology behind studying voice patterns to better understand emotion is based on years of empirical research and 11,000 different case studies, Vibeonix’s press release notes.

Utah Tech University event

Holts plans to bring awareness to these resources in them The first in-person event, Safe 2 SenseSaturday at Utah Tech University in St. George.

Safe 2 Feel provides more awareness of the MECA project, which can provide many online resources for the couple to use as a safe space for teenagers to become emotionally aware.

“I think the lasting response to depression is emotional intelligence,” says Christy Holt, who explains that she and her husband are better at recognizing their mental struggles than numbing anxiety and depression.

During the show, Holtz details ways to process and understand difficult emotions. Curtis MorleyAn author and entrepreneur, he talks about false emotions and how to deal with them.

After Morley’s friend takes over his life, he is determined to help others understand the importance of understanding and accepting their feelings.

“If he understood the difference between guilt and shame, if he understood that some emotions are okay — even if they’re painful, they don’t feel anything — he would still be with us,” Morley said. .

Morley plans to use his experience in understanding false emotions, such as unpacking the differences between “guilt” and “shame,” to help teenagers understand the dangers of allowing false emotions to influence their actions.

‘It helps you understand your own mind.’

Morley is not the only one supporting the MECA project and its resources; The charity works with teenagers from across the country, including Isabella Rose Skye, one of the nonprofit’s teenage ambassadors and a passionate advocate for mental health.

While Rose Skye was in the Broadway production of the musical “School of Rock,” she met one of the project’s partners, author Amber Trueblood. And just last year, she decided to get involved, seeing how the mission aligned with her goal to educate herself and others about adolescent mental health.

“I was looking at mental health content, videos, talks, any resources – I could definitely say that these (MECA resources) were extremely helpful. They were extremely educational. They were really easy to connect with and learn from.” Heaven said. “It helps you better understand your own mind and emotions, which helps you get along with other people.”

“Our goal with Vibeonix is ​​to introduce technology that helps people see within 15 seconds which emotions are in their energy field,” said Christy Holt.

She says people can’t be fooled by simply raising or lowering their speech when using the tech — instead, the app measures the frequency of a person’s vocal pattern, thereby lowering their emotional state.

Holt’s son, Ryder Holt, said how Vibeniks helped him better understand how to help himself through his struggles with friends and sports.

But most of all, he said, it helped him realize that he and other teenagers must have the courage to survive in difficult times.

“Emotions are normal. And it’s important to learn about them, to know what they are and, again, to know that you’re not,” he said. “You need to be here – it works, it helps, and you need to be in this world. You need to use it because it helps me.”

Rose Skye added that by discussing available resources, she hopes Saturday’s event will bring teenagers closer to their families and give them resources to learn how to assess their mental and emotional health.

“I think that kind of education and awareness is wonderful for everyone and it can go so far,” Rose Skye said. “I’m very happy to see the support for the big projects – and I hope it can go further.”

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