FRAMINGHAM – Gabriel Casado, of Framingham, was recognized by the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health for outstanding leadership in peer mentoring during its young adults conference last month in Marlborough.
Casado, 27, shared his powerful personal experience with mental health, being homeless and living in the woods and how it informed his work in providing peer mentoring support.
He currently works as a street outreach worker with the Tempo Young Adult Resource Center in Framingham, which is supported by the Massachusetts Department of Mental health.
“While being homeless, I was still working and attended Tempo, and after a while these people weren’t providers to me, they were more like family,” said Casado. “My message to others is, with the right support and guidance you are able to make it through whatever struggle you are going through.”
Casado spoke on a panel at the Department of Mental Health’s “Supporting Young Adults in Reaching their Goals” conference in Marlborough Sept. 20.
He was selected to be on the panel for his strong work in the community and ability to convey these key messages to providers and older adults.
“Gabriel is a true leader and I hope he inspires other youth to enter the field of peer mentoring,” said Department of Mental Health Commissioner Joan Mikula, who introduced Casado and other youth panelists at the conference.
The Department of Mental Health, as the State Mental Health Authority, assures and provides access to services and supports to meet the mental health needs of individuals of all ages; enabling them to live, work and participate in their communities.
Photo submitted to SOURCE