We're more than halfway through Mental Health Awareness Month.

Students from across the Mahoning Valley recently created artwork on what the concept of mental health means to them. 

Through the help of the mental health clinic ARC Psychiatry, those art pieces are now displayed for their clients to see.

Organizers tell 21 News the project is a way for students to express their depiction of the subject and helps patients visualize what mental health means to them. 

"It's not just your plain everyday office when you come in," said Clinician Shayna Glista with ARC Psychiatry. "We were able to breathe some life into it." Glista created the project to foster a sense of community and raise awareness of the topic. "At all different levels and ages, we've had an amazing interpretation of mental health," she said. 

"It's all about the relatability of the art. Truthfully, I think you can go through here and something is going to speak to everybody. Being able to find that picture that says, 'Wow, this is really saying something to me,' is going to help people too," Glista said. "Some students wrote letters attached to their artwork explaining what it meant to them to be able to participate in this. Some students have been struggling and this was a nice outlet for them to be able to demonstrate it."

Mental illness is far from rare in the country. The CDC says more than one in five adults live with mental illness with similar data seen in kids.

"All these years, people have been suffering in silence," explained Amit Mohan, Executive Director of ARC Psychiatry. "So, what we're trying to do here is give them a safe place where they can come and address the issues."

From art depictions of ADHD, depression, bipolar disorder, or anxiety, the clinic's executive directors explained addressing your concerns with a specialist is crucial.

"There's a lot of other mental health diagnoses and conditions we are able to treat," Mohan added. "Not just depression and anxiety, but ADHD, bipolar disorder, substance abuse, and more. In recent years, trauma disorders have become a huge concern. We're bringing in medication management, we're bringing in therapy services and we have genetic testing these days to help create a better way to treat patients."

"With our focus specifically on mental health, we're able to perhaps enhance the diagnosis as well as treat conditions that could be more complex," explained Boris Royak, Executive Director of ARC Psychiatry. "Especially after the COVID-19 pandemic, it's so important to talk about mental health openly. It's great that the stigma is diminishing. There is so much suffering and we're happy to offer ARC Psychiatry as a place for someone to come and receive great mental health care."

Everyone who donated their artwork was entered into a drawing to win a $150 gift card for themselves and another gift card for their school's art department. The clinic's staff also selected their favorite piece that "spoke the most to them." They chose Delaney G's drawing from Niles McKinley High School.

ARC Psychiatry has several locations throughout Northeast Ohio and recently added a location at 5208 Mahoning Ave., Suite 209, Youngstown, Ohio 44515.

Visit their website to learn more about the services they offer.