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News / Health / Clark County Health

Teen Talk’s young volunteers offer mental health support to Clark County teens

Teen volunteers go through extensive training to help community; Program turns 20 in 2023

By Nika Bartoo-Smith, Columbian staff reporter
Published: November 17, 2022, 6:03am
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4 Photos
Kris Henriksen of Teen Talk joins her dog, Hope, as she takes a break with compassion boxes for students in need at her Vancouver office. The boxes are decorated on the outside by volunteers and filled with items such as snacks, pamphlets, journals and inspiring messages.
Kris Henriksen of Teen Talk joins her dog, Hope, as she takes a break with compassion boxes for students in need at her Vancouver office. The boxes are decorated on the outside by volunteers and filled with items such as snacks, pamphlets, journals and inspiring messages. (Photos by Amanda Cowan/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

At 14, Erin Taylor become one of the original seven volunteers at Teen Talk, providing support to other youth via anonymous phone calls.

Teen Talk began in December 2003, after focus groups wrestled with how to support youth struggling with their mental health following the loss of several students from a local high school to suicide, according to program coordinator Kris Henriksen.

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Columbian staff reporter