Murrieta High School filmmakers raise mental health awareness

MURRIETA – Murrieta Valley High School (MVHS) filmmaking students participated in the Directing Change video contest where they competed against other students in Riverside, San Bernardino and Mono Counties. Students produced a 60 second public service announcement on suicide prevention and ending the silence of mental illness.

MVHS students won four awards and two honorable mentions.

The first place winners received $500 and they will be flown to Sacramento on May 13 to visit the capitol and attend a formal red carpet screening and awards ceremony at the Crest Theater with guest speakers from Fox’s hit TV series Glee. Second and third place winners received $250 in prize money.

During their visit to the capitol, students will speak with legislators and participate in the “Mental Health Matters” event taking place that day. The district’s coordinator for student support Dean Lesicko said, “I am very pleased to see our students so actively involved in this important effort to reduce the stigma attached to mental health issues and to educate others about the importance of suicide prevention. Their efforts will help make our community that much better for everyone.”

Across the country 60 million Americans live with mental illness. Directing Change is part of statewide efforts to prevent suicide, reduce stigma and discrimination related to mental illness and to promote the mental health and wellness of


* 1st Place – “Reach Out” Samantha Webb, Reginald Weston Brown & Michael Melero

* 2nd Place – “Friends for Life” Nina Watts

* Honorable Mention “Help a Friend, Save a Life” Logan Fike, Eduardao Lanuzo and Hunter Ramaekers

* Honorable Mention “Holly and Suicide” Simone Jimerson

* 1st Place – “Something Inside” Marcus Nesius

* 3rd Place – “Smile” Megan Burke

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