Dare to Dream America - Past Projects

Dare to Dream America Project Features

The Dare to Dream America program provides an opportunity for youth (ages 13 to 25) or Youth MOVE Chapters to get involved in mental health awareness activities. Successful applicants are awarded a grant up to $3,000 to implement projects that promote mental health awareness.

This opportunity is being made available through the National Technical Assistance Network for Children’s Behavioral Health under contract with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, National Training and Technical Assistance Center for Child, Youth, and Family Mental Health, Contract #HHSS280201500007C. However, these contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.

Check out the current Dare to Dream Projects

Dare to Dream America 2019 Recipients

City of Pasadena

Pasadena LGBT+ALLY Youth Summit

Youth MOVE Pasadena hosted its very first LGBT+ALLY high school summit. They invited over 200 Pasadena High school students to a fun and interactive workshop about bringing light and education to those struggling coming out, experiencing bullying, and creating safe zones in their schools and communities.

NAMI Prince George’s County and Hillside Work-Scholarship Connection

 A Youth Mental Health Awareness Fair: “MIND YOUR HEALTH 2019” 

“Mind Your Health” was successfully planned and implemented by middle and high school students to educate peer groups (participating in a county summer youth employment program) about the brain and its influence on thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.  Primary goals were to increase awareness and understanding about mental health, change perceptions to reduce the stigma of mental health, and provide information on community resources. The program included mental health-related videos, youth guided educational activities, presentations by local mental health practitioners, and a student presenter who shared her story on living with mental illness, as well as exhibits, and resource materials by local community organizations. NAMI Prince George’s County will continue the partnership with Hillside Work-Scholarship Connection and provide mental health brochures and other materials to the high schools serviced through their organization.


Prince George’s County DSS


This Dare to Dream award had three goals:

  1. Create a safe space for LGBTQ youth in Prince George’s County during Pride time
  2. Increase social supports,  and decrease isolation towards the end of the year
  3. Assist in creating new supportive relationships before the start of the school year, in decreasing feelings of loneliness, depression, isolation, and lack of social support.

Upon arrival, the youth received a goodie-bag containing pride-themed paraphernalia, among which included wristbands that would separate them by color. Once in their randomly generated groups, the youth would rotate activities which are included but not limited to icebreakers and karaoke. Youth were  encouraged to interact and talk among themselves through fun and team building activities and educational opportunities.



IDHA (Institute for Development of Human Arts)


This project focused on disseminating resources on creating alternatives in mental health for educators, youth, and other allies. Through video interviews, OnTrack NY documented changes that are being made by youth in the system to empower the next generation of youth advocates. The interviews were included in a documentary film exploring the future of mental health and supportive aid. After test screening the film, viewers engaged in important dialogue and meaningful connections. Through the film-making process, OnTrack NY was able to make connections with organizations and people in New York City.


Powerful Youth Leaders


PYL developed a skit called “TRIGGERED”, set up like a dinner theater and taking place in a school classroom setting. The main characters were seven youth (seven diagnoses), a teacher, a School Resource Officer, and other students. Each student had lived experience with a mental health diagnosis, and acted out a situation they have experience in a classroom that triggered them and revealed behaviors that caused them to get in trouble. Each student presented a short “what helped what harmed” after the situation they act out. A panel followed the skit made up of a retired Principal, mental health agency personnel, young adults with lived experience, a board member of the National Federation for Children’s Mental Health, a parent of a youth with mental health challenges, and the youth coordinator for Youth MOVE North Carolina. The conversation was led by a facilitator, using the core values and principles in a youth-led family-driven process.

Al Exito

Mental Health and School Policy Initiative

Al Exito Logo

Al Exito hosted a mental health and school policy convening gathering the Al Éxito Latinx youth. The purpose of these gatherings was to:

  1. Share the feedback received from Latinx youth with youth leaders regarding how specific school policies affect the mental health of youth,
  2. Develop an action plan to change these policies through the Iowa Department of Education by demonstrating the connection between racism experienced at school, school policies, and the mental health of Latinx students

Provide a variety of mental health practices for the youth to experience and provide feedback on incorporating different modalities into the curriculum.


YM Michigan LogoYouth MOVE Michigan


The BE SEEN Project  is a project that aimed to end stigma and spread education and awareness about mental illness in the community, breakdown barriers, and engage youth and young adults in conversations about mental illness, stigma, suicide, and trauma. The BE SEEN project consisted of three components:

  1. Statewide Social Media Campaign
  2. Digital Stories- Youth MOVE Michigan Chapters will create videos sharing their personal stories.
  3. BE SEEN Swag and Marketing Materials


Mental Health Partnership

Reimagining Mental Health

Mental Health Partnership hosted a series of workshops titled “Reimagining Mental Health.” This series was led by four young people with lived experience who created and facilitated the content of the workshops. The purpose of the project was  to introduce the concept of mental health recovery, community health, being open with own experiences, what it means to advocate for oneself. Workshops were held in partnership with schools, other youth organizations, and the community. The young people who led the workshops gained leadership skills, the young people participating will learn about advocacy, mental health, etc.

Black Seed Farmers Market LogoMuslim Community Link

Black Seed Farmers Market

The goal of this project was to help participating peers feel supported, encouraged, and well equipped. They hosted a weekly three-hour meeting bringing youth together for socializing, college information, career prospects, and overall health well being, such as how to deal with bullying, stress, and healthy emotional management. These sessions were facilitated by four current youth workers of Black Seeds Farmers Market. The content of these sessions will be a mixture of what the youth want and the project’s priorities. Youth  created a presentation regarding a problem or an experience they went through for each of the nine sessions.



Crossing Boundaries Building Bridges (CB3)

The goal of the project was to develop a cohort of youth leaders to grow as organizers and test their use of organizing and arts through the lens of mental health. The events were supposed to split into a training and a youth public rally. In the end, they engaged over 80 youth in 3 events:

  1. A Poetry and Politics teach-in about the criminal justice system
  2. A two-day court training
  3. A day-long youth organizing training