Magellan Health’s MY LIFE (Magellan Youth Leaders Inspiring Future Empowerment) is leading the way nationally for youth involvement of those in behavioral health and foster care systems. MY LIFE is a program for youth, by youth. Members are between the ages of 13 and 23 and have experience with mental health, substance abuse, juvenile justice or foster care-related issues or have a friend or family member coping with these issues.
MY LIFE began in Arizona. Through grassroots efforts by the members themselves, MY LIFE has expanded into Pennsylvania, Nebraska, Louisiana, Wyoming and Florida. In all, the groups have held over 400 regular meetings involving over 2,500 different youth. Visit MYLIFE on Facebook to learn more. MY LIFE leaders speak at national organizations, including the Alternatives Conference, sponsored by the National Mental Health Consumers’ Self Help Clearinghouse and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the National Council for Behavioral Health. They also host local workshops in places like detention centers, schools, government offices, community events and Boys and Girls Clubs. More than 6,000 youth and adults have attendees these presentations and workshops!
MY LIFE is a beautiful opportunity for youth to learn skills needed to help overcome their challenges, while inspiring them to be great role models for other youths and their communities.
Greg Dicharry, Magellan Youth Empowerment Director
MY LIFE MY FEST Celebration
Each year, many of the MY LIFE chapters hold a signature event, the Magellan Youth Festival, or MY Fest. These day-long community events are organized by MY LIFE youth to raise awareness of and reduce stigma surrounding mental health, substance abuse and foster care issues The festivals feature live music, dance performances and art exhibits and provide a space for youth to learn about resources available to them and their families.
Youth Day at the Capitol:
Another way MY LIFE youth have an impact is through an annual “Youth Day at the Capitol.” These events give youth a unique opportunity to meet face-to-face with state legislators and government officials to share their concerns and ideas about the issues they feel most affect them. MY LIFE paired with local advocacy organizations to hold Youth Day at the Capitol events in Phoenix, Arizona; Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Tallahassee, Florida and Baton Rouge, Louisiana with more than 1,000 youth participants.
Learn more about MY LIFE and Magellan
MY LIFE and all related activities are presented in partnership with Magellan Health, our customers, other youth-serving systems and youth groups, and a variety of local youth-serving organizations.