"I am so happy to have received such incredible help. The day I decided to refer myself to the Wellness Center was indeed a day that changed my life. I wish I was comfortable enough with the idea of therapy earlier on in high school." --Student, Gateway to College "I feel safe here and the staff members have helped me work through and past my addiction." --Student, International High School "I am less pessimistic and that makes me feel better. I am more able to understand and am willing to think more deeply about my own actions." --Student, Downtown High School "I am more confident, have more self-respect and more satisfied with my life." --Student, Civic Center High School "I am relieved to finally be able to have a caring adult who I can talk to honestly and someone who I can rely on for help and I was able to have that all due to the Wellness Center." --Student, Independence High School

Our Students

Adolescence is a time of major transition, when youth develop many of the habits that will influence their future health and well-being. While most youth are healthy, others engage in risky behaviors that can jeopardize their health and, ultimately, adversely affect their health as adults.

The 2011 National Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) reported unmet mental health needs among adolescents, with 28.5 percent reporting feeling sad or hopeless for more than two consecutive weeks.

The survey results indicate that many high school students are engaged in risky behaviors associated with the leading causes of death among persons aged 10–24 years in the United States.

  • Nearly 33 percent of high school students nationwide had texted or e-mailed while driving
  • Nearly 39 percent had drunk alcohol
  • 23 percent had used marijuana
  • Almost 33 percent of students had been in a physical fight
  • More than 20 percent had been bullied on school property
  • Nearly 8 percent had attempted suicide
  • Many high school students nationwide are engaged in sexual risk behaviors associated with unintended pregnancies and STDs, including HIV infection.

San Francisco high school students face the same issues as adolescents nationwide. These areas – behavioral, mental, and reproductive health services – present the most urgent needs and form the bulk of the services offered through the Wellness Initiative. If left unaddressed, absenteeism and low academic achievement are the most likely consequences.


Student Voices

Students from all different backgrounds come to Wellness Centers for support with all different kinds of issues. Meet several of them from six different high schools in San Francisco.


Galileo June Jordan Lowell O\'Connell Wallenburg Washington