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MMS programs promote mental and financial well-being

Throughout the past couple of months Millbrook Middle and High Schools hosted a series of talks focused on social-emotional learning for both middle and high school students.

Ending the Silence on Mental Health


The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) hosted a presentation called “Ending the Silence” on December 1 which helps students learn about the warning signs of mental health conditions and what steps they should take if they or someone they know is showing symptoms of a mental health condition. 

Millbrook High School senior Lorraine Affinge has been supportive of bringing these types of resources to the district and brought it to the attention of Samantha Holsborg, Supervisor of Student Services, who arranged to have NAMI representatives visit.

“I have always been a true advocate for mental health,” Affinge said. “I just truly want Millbrook to have the proper resources and things put into place so that students feel supported and cared for.”

After meeting with Affinge, Holsborg was connected with NAMI Mid-Hudson Program Director Jo Ann Brown. Holsborg later went to see a NAMI presentation at Beacon High School which sealed the deal in bringing NAMI to Millbrook.

“After seeing its success, we welcomed NAMI to present to our 8th-12th grade students,” Holsborg said. 

Hang Up and Drive 

MHS students learned about the dangers of distracted driving during a grant-funded assembly on December 9 at the school’s auditorium. 

Jacy Good and Steve Johnson, advocates for phone-free roads, sent an inquiry to MHS Principal Eric Seipp about presenting the program and Seipp welcomed the opportunity.

Good was in a car accident in 2008, caused by a distracted driver, that left her partially paralyzed and claimed the lives of her parents. Ever since, the duo have worked tirelessly to educate the country about the dangers of cell phone use while behind the wheel.

Holsborg herself was actively engaged in the assembly along with her students, making for a successful event. 

“The hope is to end the epidemic that shatters thousands of American lives every year,” Holsborg said. “As a participant myself, the presentation was emotional and impactful.”

Money Smart Kids


A presentation teaching students about ways to earn money, save it and the importance of careful spending was held on November 22 by Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union Financial Education Specialist, Melissa Colon.

After Holsborg attended a “Working Together for Youth Success” retreat, she connected with multiple organizations and agencies, including MHV. She worked together with Colon to develop one of many dates to provide financial education relevant to life’s financial journey to Millbrook students. 

In addition to the financial basics, students also learned about using savings accounts to reach financial goals, how to manage spending money on “wants” and earning interest.

“Students learned how to chart their savings to reach financial goals,” Holsborg explained. “It built on the importance of smart money decisions.”