Mental Health Warrior: Irrionne Adams

A team of dedicated students, including Teen Outreach Program® veteran and senior Irrionne Adams, brought Roanoke Valley’s Global Youth Service Day (GYSD) 2019 to life.

Irrionne Adams has built a long history at Family Service of Roanoke Valley, having been in Family Service’s programs since elementary school.  This means she has been a part of Positive Action, TOP and GYSD for several years.

“Over the many years that I’ve been a part of Positive Action, Teen Outreach Program and Family Service in general, it’s meant being active out in my community,” Irrionne said.

Program Manager Sarah Jane Lawrence (left) with Irrionne Adams (right)

This year, Carilion Children’s and Family Service of Roanoke Valley, which plans the local GYSD events each year, have partnered to host the fourth annual Carilion Children’s Family 1-Miler in conjunction with the Foot Levelers Blue Ridge Marathon on Saturday, April 13 in Elmwood Park.

Global Youth Service Day (GYSD) is the largest service event in the world and the only one to celebrate the contributions children and youth make 365 days of the year!

Supported by Family Service of Roanoke Valley youth development specialists, the youth-led planning team planned great activities for the 31st Global Youth Service Day (GYSD). To be involved in the leadership groups that plan GYSD was very exciting as “being one of the people behind the scenes planning an event that’s huge and takes place world-wide feels great!” Irrionne said.

Irrionne knows just how important it is for youth to be involved in programs like TOP and GYSD.

“Often youth experience lots of things in their community, their homes, and daily life and feel they have no outlet,” Irrionne said, “As a result, they often get into trouble.  I feel if a lot more youth participated it could brighten up their future and daily lives.  In TOP, you’re shown what it is to be a leader and also allowed to express yourself, surrounded by mentors who care.  Youth participating in GYSD is important because we’re the upcoming leaders.  Our involvement matters.”

Anyone at Family Service who knows her says she is an incredible young woman. She will be getting a class ring from Family Service this year and she will be graduating from Fleming High School. Soon after Irrionne will be attending college as she was just recently accepted to Norfolk State University.