Mental Health & Wellbeing | Kickoff Event for our Grant Round

In this in person gathering, we’ll do a short guided meditation, connect with talented and diverse mental health & wellbeing changemakers, and engage in community dialogues. We’ll announce the five finalist organizations that will participate in our Grant Round. Food and drinks will be provided.

We’re delighted to announce our very mindful and accomplished Speakers for this event!

Event Agenda

Tuesday, Oct. 3rd 4-6:30PM, In Person at SV2

  • 4:00-4:25pm | Open Mixer: Mingle, Grab Food, Settle In …
  • 4:25-4:45pm | Program Starts: Welcome, Short Meditation, and Overview
  • 4:45-5:40pm | Speaker Introductions and Panel Discussion
  • 5:40-6:20pm | Community Roundtable Chats
  • 6:20-6:30pm | Announce Grant Round Five Finalist Organizations + Next Steps, Event Close

In the panel discussion, we’ll learn more about Shawon, Laura, and Helen’s work, their experiences and changemaker journeys as it relates to mental health & wellbeing, challenges and opportunities to make a positive impact, calls to action, including guidance for funders and more. We’ve asked them to keep it real and connective!

In the interactive community roundtable chats, Shawon, Laura, and Helen will each facilitate a small group icebreaker and deeper discussion. Event participants can select which small group they’d like to join.

Event Location and Arrival

Silicon Valley Social Venture Fund (SV2) | 350 Twin Dolphin Drive Suite 103, Redwood City, CA 94065. We are in the Sobrato Center for Nonprofits. There is free parking in front of the building. We are on the first floor and the building is ramp accessible. When you enter the building, you’ll see our office straight down the hallway, our doors will be open and we’ll be ready to greet you!

Speaker Bios

Helen Hsu

Helen is Director of Outreach, Asian American specialist, and lecturer at Stanford University. She is President of the American Psychological (APA) Association Div. 45 (Society for the Study of Race, Culture and Ethnicity) , a past president of the Asian American Psychological Association (AAPA), and past Chair of the Training Advisory Committee at the APA Minority Fellowship Program. She is an advisory board member of the JED Foundation which focuses on teen and young adult suicide prevention. She is the Clinical Lead of Pandora Bio, a start up developing precision early detection tools for student mental health. Helen also served on the APA Committee on sexual orientation and gender expression.

As a bi-cultural, bi-lingual clinician, Helen has worked within community-based mental health systems providing and coordinating K-12 school based clinical services, family, and community care and services for those with chronic and severe mental illness. Her work has focused primarily on intersectional diverse communities, culturally responsive treatment, parenting education, school-based clinical services, grief and loss, and mentorship and leadership training of psychology students. As the founder of Hella Mental Health she has extensive experience in private practice and as a domain expert consultant to corporate, university, entertainment and clinical organizations. She is currently working with the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) action plan to advance Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Mental Health. Her Healing Trauma for Asian Americans workbook will be published by New Harbinger in 2024.

Laura Parmer-Lohan

Laura works at the roundabout of community building, civic engagement, and biotech.

She currently serves as the Chief of Staff for Amgen South San Francisco – a research and development facility and is leading efforts to inspire local, historically excluded youth to find their inner scientist. She clears the path for Amgen scientists so that they can conduct world-class innovative research and development to create medicines in service to patients throughout the world.

Her civic leadership experience includes serving as the former mayor of the City of San Carlos and board membership for Peninsula Clean Energy, San Mateo County Home for All, and San Mateo County COVID Response Economic Recovery Subcommittee. Her mantra, “everyone has a voice that needs to be heard”, influenced and inspired her policy making. In 2019, she was the first to raise the Pride flag in her town and was pleased to see that in 2022 every city and town in San Mateo County followed suit.

She is currently committing efforts to improving the quality of mental health care for youth aged 18-25 years.

Her professional experience includes more than 20 years’ experience in marketing leadership roles as the founder and president of Ruckus Partners a marketing consulting firm, head of marketing for diagnostic products/service companies and product marketing leadership for first-in-class diabetes medicines and cardiovascular medical devices.

She walks the family dog, Charlie and plays pickleball with her wife, Kathy, and two college age sons, Bradley, and Gregory. She is a 2023 San Francisco Business Times Most Influential Women Nominee, an American Leadership Sr. Fellow and earned her Bachelor of Arts from UC Santa Cruz and her MBA from UC Berkeley, Haas School of Business.

Shawon Jackson

Shawon Jackson (he/him) is the Founder and CEO of Vocal Justice, a nonprofit that positions youth who are proximate to injustice as leaders for social change. Before Vocal Justice, Shawon worked with an education nonprofit in the Dominican Republic and did public and social sector consulting with Deloitte. Shawon completed his undergraduate studies at Princeton, where he studied public policy and served two terms as student body president. He earned his MPP/MBA from Harvard Kennedy School and Stanford Business School. If he’s not working, you’ll likely find Shawon dancing hip-hop, bachata, or merengue.

More details about the event agenda will be shared soon.


Mental Health & Wellbeing continuously emerges as a top priority in our community, weaves the fabric of human experience, shapes our emotions, relationships and overall resilience. Mental Health & Wellbeing ultimately influences our collective strength and vitality of our communities.

The Bay Area, known for its vibrant culture, technological advancements, and thriving economy, struggles with its unique challenges to mental health and wellbeing. These challenges are a fast-paced lifestyle, intense work environment, and high cost of living. All these stressors can increase the risk of both substance use and mental illness.

In December 2023, SV2 will allocate $150,000 of unrestricted, three-year funding across two organizations ($75,000 each). SV2 will also offer the selected organizations beyond-the-dollars support as helpful and friendship! Throughout our process, SV2 practices equity and trust-based philanthropy in our grantmaking and relationship building.

Full schedule of Grant Round Meetings (all on Zoom):

  • Meeting #2 | Get to know each other | Tuesday, Oct. 24th 12:30-2:30PM | RSVP here
  • Meeting #3 | Learning + Sharing | MONDAY, Nov. 13th 12:30-2:30PM | RSVP here
  • Meeting #4 | Grant Decision | Tuesday, Dec. 5th 12:30-2:30PM | RSVP here

Questions? Contact Amy Badiani, Director of Community Engagement, SV2: