Delphos St. John's students encouraged to speak up during mental health seminar

Students at Delphos St. John's spent the day at a mental health seminar presented by Rodney Lavoie Jr.

Lavoie was a contestant on the show "Survivor." After the show, he found his sister had died from a drug overdose and proceeded to go through some trauma. Now Lavoie helps people deal with the trauma they go through in their life, specifically students. His message is that silence kills. He aims to inspire students going through trauma to talk to somebody about what they go through. He'd like to see it become the norm to see a counselor or therapist. Lavoie said to help, parents need to adjust to the times for their kids to open up.

"I hope the kids walk away, knowing they can go to their guidance counselor, they can go to their principal and their staff and know that they have a safe haven," Lavoie said. "If they're really going through something, they don't have to hold it in inside. I want the kids to know that silence does kill. So don't keep anything bottled inside, whether you've been holding in that you're gay, or you've been holding in that you're trans. Whether you have something going on at home, where you're mother's struggling on drugs."

Lavoie brought a friend along for the seminar and has been a mentor to him.

"It's ok not to be ok," Chris Dahlan said. "It's ok not to be ok. Let's be proud of that. Lets instead of holding back, let's share because people don't understand that by sharing you're not helping yourself, you're helping every single person around you that's listening to you."

If you are struggling with something, Lavoie encourages you to find someone you can talk to.