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SMILE Award 1 v3

SMILE Award - Recipients Announced

smiling southeast asian couple with two young children outside in a park

At a Glance

We are pleased to announce the first-ever SMILE Award offered by Choose Mental Health.  This prestigious award recognizes leaders, companies and organizations that positively impact mental health, particularly for children and youth.

The SMILE Award represents - Sustained Mental Health Initiatives and Lifetime of Excellence.

Thank you everyone who was nominated for the 2023 SMILE Award. Your talents and dedication to mental health for children and youth is impressive at every level. Deciding only one individual and one company who deserves this is impossible as everyone we saw is deserving.

Check out the results below and the winners of the 2023 SMILE Award.

Upcoming 2024 nominations, stay updated for important details by watching this site.

SMILE Award Presentation Youth Guidance

Youth Guidance Recipient of Lifetime Achievement SMILE Award

Youth Guidance, of Chicago, stands at the forefront of championing social emotional learning support. It recognizes the profound impact it has on the well-being and future of the youth it serves.

Youth Guidance serves the most vulnerable populations. These groups are facing unprecedented challenges and societal pressures. By fostering mental wellness as a foundation for personal growth, academic success and positive life outcomes flourish.

Providing evidence-based, trauma-informed curriculum through dedicated weekly group sessions, Youth Guidance aims to dismantle the stigma. This includes fostering open conversations and creating a supportive environment where mental health concerns are
met with empathy, understanding and effective intervention.

Their programs include: social-emotional learning program (SEL) Evolve, Becoming A Man® (BAM®) and Working on Womanhood (WOW).

Youth Guidance is committed to providing resources and tools. This equips young individuals with the skills to manage stress, cope with adversity and build emotional intelligence. Youth Guidance's advocacy for youth mental health is rooted in a deep commitment to nurturing the holistic development of young individuals.

By promoting open dialogue, eradicating stigma and providing essential tools for resilience, the organization endeavors to create a future where every young person can thrive emotionally, academically, personally and have a brighter future.

Rhainazelle Manzano - [provided by individual]

Rhainazelle Manzano Recipient of Prestegious SMILE Award

Rhainazelle Manzano of California, stands as an advocate for youth mental health, employing a comprehensive approach that integrates policy, practice, community engagement and leadership. Active involvement in innovative case management protocols highlights her dedication to pioneering data-driven approaches.

Rhainazelle's academic background ensures the latest advancements benefit young individuals. Engagement with The National Society of Leadership and Success and volunteering reflects her commitment to holistic well-being, positively impacting the lives of youth facing mental health challenges. 

Rhainazelle's inspiration for advocating youth mental health stems from her genuine empathy and unwavering passion for the children she worked with fueled her commitment to championing an individualized approach to behavioral therapy.

Witnessing tangible improvements in behavior, emotional regulation, and overall well-being solidified her dedication to advocating for effective policies and practices. Her academic journey empowered her to bridge the gap between research and practice.