FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresno County leaders were all ears Tuesday -- eager to hear from youth in the community.
The Department of Behavioral Health hosted its first Youth Wellness Summit
"What else can we do to serve you," asked Golden Plains Unified School Superintendent Felipe Piedra. "What else do you guys need?"
Those were some of the questions asked to dozens of eighth through 12th graders from San Joaquin.
The small city is about 30 miles southwest of Fresno, which the mayor said makes it hard for families to access health services.
"It's even like the knowledge of these services," Mayor Julia Hernandez said. "A lot of times, our families aren't aware that these services are available to them."
The group spent the morning learning about wellness and what social determinants can impact it - such as housing, food insecurity or violence.
Then the students shared with the county and city leaders what they believe could make San Joaquin a healthier place.
"What works for me may not necessarily work for our youth right now," explained Mayor Hernandez. "It may not be the same needs."
According to one teen, he'd like to see more opportunities for the community to learn about mental health to help normalize the conversation.
"People would like to keep that to their selves and are too shy and embarrassed to tell people," said 11th grader Brian Guzman.
Officials hope students take what they learned back home to their families. They also hope it empowers them to stay engaged in the community to help shape its future.