Stop the Stigma. Start the Conversation.


Who we are: Our Voices is a multifaceted quarterly newsletter that is broadcasted to teens all over the city. With a culmination of student work such as art, poetry, photographs, and even individual interviews, we strive to provide a space for all teens to express themselves in any way they choose. Since our publication is “by teens, for teens,” we hope to help raise mental health awareness in the teenage community, and take steps towards shattering the stigma.
Our Story: Our journey began at the 1N5 Youth Mental Health Innovation Challenge, a competitive workshop that challenged teenagers to utilize design thinking in order to invent a creative solution to help solve today’s mental health stigmas. As a team, we came up with an idea for a student-led mental health awareness magazine, and though we did not receive a grant, our passion still remained as 1N5 decided to assist us in developing an online version of our idea: a digital newsletter. And, here we are!

Click on newsletter to see full issue

Submission process:
  • Submit a piece of art, a photo, or poem related to the theme of Mental Health (mental illness, mental wellness, or anything related). Don’t be afraid to express yourself! Be creative!
  • Add a caption: what motivated you to write/create this piece? Why is this topic important to you? What do you hope to achieve by sharing this? **Captions limited to 200 words**
  • Download a pdf or jpeg image of your work!
  • Send the image of your creation to this address:
  • You can submit your work using your name or anonymously…it is up to you.
  • We are accepting entries for the Summer 2020 issue. We can’t wait to see what you come up with!
  • If you have any questions, please contact us at the email address above.

Hello! My name is Alexis Cokonougher and I’m a second year at Xavier University. Currently my major is Psychology with a minor in Gender and Diversity Studies.

My passions include writing poetry, studying art history, learning new things and empowering others. This project is important to me because it combines my professional passion of studying psychology with my personal love for expression through art. I’ve always had an incredible want to reach out to teens and young adults coping with mental illness as they work through growing up and digging at the core of who they are. I believe our project is not only important, but vital to teens who may not have the courage to express how they’re feeling mentally throughout their daily lives. My hope is that every young adult uses this newsletter as a vessel to express their feelings, create a dialogue with one another, but most of all, I hope this makes them realize how truly invaluable their stories are.

Hi! My name is Deeya Prakash, and I am a sophomore at Sycamore High School this year. I am a golfer and a swimmer (a proud Aviator Athlete!) and my passions include reading, writing, science, and mock trial.

This project is so important to me as I have had many friends affected by mental illnesses, and I have seen what they do to teens and their families. So, I tried to find a way to do something about it, and the first step towards action is shattering the stigma. So many people around me are afraid to speak up, and every day, thousands of teens suppress emotions, terrified of society’s reaction and judgement towards having a mental illness. It’s heartbreaking to realize just how many adolescents shy away from treatment, purely because of this stigma that the world has procured. I couldn’t watch these voices go unheard, and thus, I helped develop Our Voices. This isn’t just a side project for me—it’s helping me fulfill a purpose: to help others, and hopefully, provide a space for teens to help each other. I am so excited to see how far we as a community can go in the marathon of mental health awareness!

Hey there! My name is Alaina Delsignore, and I am a junior at Sycamore High School this year. I love to play the violin, and I am also a proud member of the Sycamore soccer team.

Currently, I participate in a few clubs, including mock trial, speech & debate, and student council. In the community, I engage myself through volunteer work at TriHealth and Operation Give Back (OGB), a local nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote education and personal growth as well as a community outreach to younger, disadvantaged students. In Cincinnati and throughout the nation, teens continue to struggle with mental illness as they move from adolescence into young adulthood, managing copious amounts of stress and making life-altering decisions. I believe we should all take it upon ourselves to understand how others feel and what others feel—to foster an environment where people in general feel safe to express their emotions. This initiative struck a chord with me because I grew up struggling with OCD, and I never truly had an outlet to express myself as a teen. I want things to be different for the future. My passion for this project shines through in about everything I involve myself with, and I have had the wonderful opportunity to work with like-minded students hoping to further similar ideals. Mental health and general wellness must be included in the conversation, and Our Voices is providing teens across our community the chance to finally start this conversation through their own unique, creative capacities. Let’s be the change!

Hello! My name is Cooper Scanlon. I’m a freshman at Vanderbilt University. I am currently undecided, but am considering Human and Organizational Development as a major.

My passions include biking, getting lost, and drinking water. This project is important to me because it gives others the opportunity to express things they may not otherwise be comfortable sharing. I’m so proud of all of the hard work that has gone into this project and I’m grateful to have such a wonderful team!