Mental Health America Blog https://www.mhanational.org/newsroom/chiming-in/feed en Student-driven solutions to mentally healthier campuses: MHA’s second annual CMHIC report https://www.mhanational.org/blog/student-driven-solutions-mentally-healthier-campuses-mhas-second-annual-cmhic-report <span>Student-driven solutions to mentally healthier campuses: MHA’s second annual CMHIC report</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-10/Making%20Space%20for%20Mental%20Health%20on%20Campus.png" alt="Making Space for Mental Health on Campus featuring 7 Council Members" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Mon, 10/28/2019 - 16:57</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">October 29, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Kelly Davis, Director of Peer Advocacy, Supports, and Services at Mental Health America</em></p> <p>My experience as a college student was similar to the stories I now hear from students across the country. I came to school with a significant history of mental health challenges and treatment, yet there was no plan or resources for a smooth transition. When I reached a crisis where I felt pressure to withdraw or even drop out of school, it was disability accommodations and access to often cost-prohibitive resources that helped me scrape by enough to stay enrolled. Even with these resources, I knew that what we were doing on campus, and an ongoing focus on more traditional services and awareness campaigns, would not be enough to ensure inclusion and support student mental health and wellbeing.</p> <p>Peer support, an emphasis on disability accommodations, information from others with lived experience, and education and self-help tools were lacking on my campus and made key differences in my life and future. I thought I was the only one with these struggles, yet, the more I talked to other students, the more I found others who felt the same. Yes, traditional resources are important for those who want and need them, but a broader shift to more inclusive campuses with student-led programs and student-driven strategies for engagement were key to making colleges as accessible as possible.</p> <p>In 2017, I led the development of Mental Health America’s (MHA) Collegiate Mental Health Innovation Council (CMHIC) to identify the student leaders from across the US who understood these challenges. By identifying individuals who created programs to fill gaps on their campuses, the goal of CMHIC is to expand their programs and share information with students from other schools who may want to do something similar.</p> <p>Last year, the group focused on peer support, disability supports, and technology for our first annual CMHIC report. This year’s cohort expanded this focus to mental health across different campus communities, formalized peer support programs, anytime and drop-in resources, and disability cultural centers. The creativity of student approaches makes it clear that students know not just what their peers need but also how to engage them.</p> <p>This report continues MHA’s long history of promoting the voices of lived experience and our belief that people most impacted by issues can and should be at the forefront in addressing them. Old assumptions about what works and where power should lie are not keeping up with what students want and need. I am grateful to work with students who are taking leadership to transform higher education for their peers so that anyone, regardless of their mental health history, can be included and thrive on campus. Both the needs and stakes are high for campus mental health. It is time for all of us to listen.</p> <p><em>In addition to reading this year’s report, stay tuned for video interviews with members of the 2018-2019 CMHIC cohort that will be released weekly.</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/college" hreflang="en">college</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=17033&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="Th3m9-Mxl4TIx15pWD5bcFQMaJN1D8W-1-XA7chBaDc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Mon, 28 Oct 2019 20:57:45 +0000 JCheang 17033 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/student-driven-solutions-mentally-healthier-campuses-mhas-second-annual-cmhic-report#comments Youth Suicide Jumped 56 Percent in Ten Years—I was almost one of them https://www.mhanational.org/blog/youth-suicide-jumped-56-percent-ten-years-i-was-almost-one-them <span>Youth Suicide Jumped 56 Percent in Ten Years—I was almost one of them</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-10/image1.jpeg" alt="Youth United for Change Group Photo" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Fri, 10/18/2019 - 12:04</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">October 18, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Kelly Davis, Director of Peer Advocacy, Supports, and Services at Mental Health America</em></p> <p>A <a href="https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db352-h.pdf">new report</a> from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows a horrifying trend in youth and young adult mental health in the United States. Between 2007-2017, suicides among people ages 10-24 increased by 56 percent. These are not just numbers, but lives lost and families and communities forever changed. As a young person who survived multiple suicide attempts, I believe that I and other young people and attempt survivors have invaluable perspectives on how to address this complicated and growing issue.</p> <p>It is clear that what we are doing is not working. Research to determine the causes of the increases in suicide and the process of expanding the behavioral health workforce to increase access to traditional services will take significant time. And while crisis resources like the <a href="https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/">National Suicide Prevention Lifeline</a> and the <a href="https://www.crisistextline.org/">Crisis Text Line</a> are helpful and important, relying on crisis services alone is both ineffective and unacceptable.</p> <p>We need understanding, but we also need mobilized communities and young people. We cannot continue to think about suicide as a single person’s problem but as a way for us to reflect not only in how we talk as communities but the structures that we build to support one another.</p> <p>The world is different than it has ever been before. Few of those developing, researching, and implementing initiatives have grown up under the rapid change we are experiencing. Public dialogue is a good start, but building peer support, community leadership, and open access to mental health tools, in addition to broader social action to address things like discrimination, is essential.</p> <p>If we want to address youth suicide, we have to be committed to not just stopping deaths but improving lives and building a world that people want to stay in. Given the immediacy of the problem and the ineffectiveness of the present solutions, it is time to let the people closest to the pain lead.</p> <p>Whether it is <a href="https://www.notokapp.com/">mobile apps</a>, <a href="https://www.mhanational.org/collegiate-mental-health-innovation-council">campus-based programs for college students</a>, or <a href="https://www.youthera.org">community-based organizations for teens and young adults</a>, attempt survivors and young people with lived experience are already building a better world for their peers. For us, it is life or death, and the earlier we support people the better they will be for the rest of their lives. It is time for those in positions of power and leadership to listen to and support these ideas. We do not have time to wait.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/suicide" hreflang="en">suicide</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=17016&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="Cd_TvwDAOx6Z2Wmgu_mMotdKlOH0kPXySKNAXWpZhfI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Fri, 18 Oct 2019 16:04:02 +0000 JCheang 17016 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/youth-suicide-jumped-56-percent-ten-years-i-was-almost-one-them#comments The Tragic Story of State Custodial Institutions https://www.mhanational.org/blog/tragic-story-state-custodial-institutions <span>The Tragic Story of State Custodial Institutions</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-10/dc8487ec41686c8adc0fc9f7c97a9fce.jpg" alt="Frank Proctor, Board Chair for the National Mental Health Association, Joan Crawford, and President Kennedy" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Wed, 10/09/2019 - 13:08</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">October 09, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>By Frank Proctor, Former MHA Board Chair (pictured left above with Joan Crawford and President Kennedy), and Phil Ryan, Former MHA CEO</p> <p><em>From time to time, MHA invites guest blogs on issues of current discussion and debate. The following timely piece was co-authored by two former MHA executives. Please excuse their somewhat archaic language; these are their exact words, and we wanted their voices to remain authentic. </em></p> <p>The tragic story of the State custodial institutions has been too often told to warrant repetition in detail here. The neglect, abandonment, overcrowding, shortness of staff, inadequacy of equipment and facilities are all already old stories.</p> <p>But, if all that were corrected today, if the hospitals were by some miracle renovated, refurnished, supplied with all the staff and supplies and equipment that they needed— and it would take nothing short of a miracle to accomplish this — if all that were to happen, this would still not provide an ultimately satisfactory solution for the problem, nor an ultimately satisfactory answer to the needs of the mentally ill.</p> <p>There is one thing that physical change can never do for these hospitals, and that is to remove from them the quality of separateness and difference.</p> <p>Their isolation and distance from the community constitutes more than physical alienation. It constitutes spiritual, philosophical, and ethical alienation. So long as we continue to treat the mentally ill in distant and separate institutions, away from the rest of society, so long will we continue to regard the mentally ill as separate and different, and so long will we continue to deny to them the same kind of care, the same kind of medical attention, the same kind of sympathy and interest that we accord to our physically ill.</p> <p>And so long as we do that, the problem of mental illness with its gigantic human and financial cost will continue to grow and not diminish.</p> <p>The fact is that the mentally ill are not different. They are sick people. Their strange and often difficult behavior is the symptom of their illness. They are in need of medical care like other sick people. And they are in need of this care in the community where they live, among family and friends — near the church or temple where they worship and near the job where they have worked — near other health and welfare services — in facilities which are similar to or part of those in which the physically ill are treated; with the same medical and humane considerations; and with the same level of quality and adequacy.</p> <p>This is not merely an ethical or moral necessity. This is a medical necessity.</p> <p>It has been reported to us time after time that the necessary period of treatment is much lower and the recovery rate much higher among patients treated in the community and under such conditions as I have just described, than it is for patients who are treated in the State mental hospitals.</p> <p><em>Mr. Proctor and Mr. Ryan gave this statement to Congress fifty-six years ago in March, 1963.</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/policy" hreflang="en">policy</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=17005&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="fxMoG6ZH1ifyCOzxGcL2ZFcKbwebC8N9KZHcm0YzodE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Wed, 09 Oct 2019 17:08:40 +0000 JCheang 17005 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/tragic-story-state-custodial-institutions#comments Mental Health and Creativity: The Giving Gallery Artist Spotlight https://www.mhanational.org/blog/mental-health-and-creativity-giving-gallery-artist-spotlight <span>Mental Health and Creativity: The Giving Gallery Artist Spotlight</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-10/tgg%20blog.png" alt="Jacob (left) and Nolan (right)" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Mon, 10/07/2019 - 14:06</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">October 07, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Amanda Lipp, CEO, and Founder of The Giving Gallery</em></p> <p>Jacob Goodwin and Nolan Fansler are California-based artists who are raising awareness and funds for Mental Health America (MHA) through art on The Giving Gallery. They are passionate about sharing how their creative process relates to mental health.</p> <p>The Giving Gallery is an online art gallery where artists can share their story and sell their work to support mental health nonprofits, including MHA. You can follow them on <a href="https://www.instagram.com/thegivinggallery/">Instagram</a> or visit their <a href="https://www.thegivinggallery.org/">website</a> to learn more.</p> <p><strong>1. How does art relate to your mental health?</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong>Nolan Fansler: </strong>Making art is essential for my mental health because a blank page or canvas is one of the only spaces where I’ve been able to express myself without any exterior rules or judgements. I believe that making art is just as much a way of processing information as writing or talking. It has become clear to me that making something on one's own terms from start to finish is healing. My creative process is often done in solitude. This allows for an honesty with myself and the viewer of my art that I don’t have anywhere else in adult life. I believe that being honest with oneself and others is directly related to mental health.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Jacob Goodwin:</strong> Art is an escape or release from my everyday world. My personality is more introverted, so I take in a lot of information and energy from the outside world and it bottles up. These feelings, energies, and emotions gather up, and then art helps me release it - channeling that energy into something that I can share with the world. My mind and interests usually gravitate towards ideas or content that is heavy and negative. For me, there is a sense of realness and sensibility within that content that grounds me as an artist.</li> </ul> <p><strong>2. Why do you make art? What is your process?</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong>Nolan Fansler:</strong> Making art is a compulsion for me. It’s how I organize my experience and unravel my opinions. Painting allows me the ability to see what I’m feeling and thinking in relation to my environment. Every one of my paintings is a moment of self-discovery. Without art there would be so many things inside of me that I would not understand because I couldn’t see them. This may sound counter-intuitive, but I paint not because I know exactly what I want to say, I paint to understand what I have to say.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Jacob Goodwin:</strong> I make art to make a statement. Art is all about making statements that otherwise would not be made or to embellish on an idea that may, perhaps, need some visual aspect to it to make it greater. My artistic process is fairly internet content driven. I find images from various sources: occasionally books or magazines and build a collage-type work. From there I work off the images to create a painting. This is just one process I use. I have some abstract works that require no images but are based purely on feeling, emotion and my response to color.</li> </ul> <p><strong>3. Why did you join The Giving Gallery? For example, to be part of a larger movement to support mental health nonprofits, to increase your visibility or philanthropic status as an artist, to feel purpose, or this can also be where you talk about a/your personal mental health story.</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong>Nolan Fansler: </strong>I joined The Giving Gallery because they have challenged me to think about my work through the lens of mental health. This challenge has made me increasingly aware of how vital mental health is to sustain and produce the work needed to build a successful career. The Giving Gallery provides a platform where artists can share their identity and how their work relates to mental health. I believe that throughout history, artists are compelled to reimagine, redefine and provoke new visions of what is possible.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Jacob Goodwin:</strong> I believe that artists need as many outlets or avenues of exposure as possible. I also believe that the outlets artists choose to represent says something about the artist. I joined the Giving Gallery because I believe that mental health is being overlooked within our society and community, and art can help with that issue in a major way.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Giving Gallery Shops:</strong></p> <p><a href="https://www.thegivinggallery.org/jacobg2190/">Jacob Goodwin</a></p> <p><a href="https://www.thegivinggallery.org/c-nolan-fansler/">Nolan Fansler</a></p> <p><strong>Videos:</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;<a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nAUFzWNS7Zs&amp;list=PLnLTZSm8k5LqdpRp0Uzy6hUanLHcrulne&amp;index=3&amp;t=0s">Jacob’s 1 minute film</a></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=17001&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="hdpuJf9fhjrcLlxpBsUo5hhiZ10lc_wZGtcQbLjiNik"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Mon, 07 Oct 2019 18:06:40 +0000 JCheang 17001 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/mental-health-and-creativity-giving-gallery-artist-spotlight#comments What You Need to Know About Suicidal Behavior Right Now https://www.mhanational.org/blog/what-you-need-know-about-suicidal-behavior-right-now <span>What You Need to Know About Suicidal Behavior Right Now</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-09/Thomas15_0.jpg" alt="Man sitting by tree" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Thu, 09/19/2019 - 11:14</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">September 26, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Dr. Keita Franklin, Chief Clinical Officer at Psych Hub</em></p> <p>The number one thing I’ve learned in my more than 20 years of experience in the mental health space is that there is always more to be learned. Suicidal behavior and prevention are complex. Just as there is not one single thing leading to suicidal behaviors, there is also not one single thing that will prevent them from occurring. In order to provide exceptional care and support to individuals with lived experience, friends, family members and co-workers, we must continue to learn about mental health.</p> <p>With that in mind, let’s review the latest trends, warning signs and some key resources that everyone should be aware of:</p> <h3>Suicidal Behavior Trends</h3> <p>Suicidal behavior does not discriminate—it is a national and global issue touching all populations. To fully understand the impact of suicidal behavior it’s vital to be aware of key trends.</p> <ul> <li> <p>Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S. with nearly<a href="https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2018/p0607-suicide-prevention.html"> 45,000</a> Americans aged 10 or older dying from suicide in 2017.</p> </li> <li> <p>Suicide rates have been rising in nearly every state from<a href="https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2018/p0607-suicide-prevention.html"> 1999 to 2016</a>, with over 25 states experiencing increases of over 30%.</p> </li> <li> <p>Suicide has become a public health crisis, ranking as the tenth leading cause of death in the<a href="https://www.apa.org/monitor/2019/03/trends-suicide"> U.S.</a></p> </li> <li> <p>Suicide is the second leading cause of death in individuals aged<a href="https://www.apa.org/monitor/2019/03/trends-suicide"> 10-34</a>.</p> </li> <li> <p>While suicide rates have increased in the U.S., they have decreased in other countries, such as Japan and Canada, proving that we can bend the curve of the suicide crisis in the other direction.</p> </li> </ul> <h3>The Warning Signs</h3> <p>Every single person can help save a life. With suicide rates continuing to rise, it has become even more important for people to be aware of the common signs and symptoms of suicidal behavior including:</p> <ul> <li>Extreme mood swings</li> <li>Showing rage</li> <li>Withdrawing or isolating from others</li> <li>Sleeping too little or too much</li> <li>Acting anxious or agitated</li> <li>Substance abuse</li> <li>Talking about feeling hopeless or trapped</li> <li>Talking about wanting to die</li> <li>Feeling like a burden</li> </ul> <p>Life stressors can include:</p> <ul> <li>Relationship struggles</li> <li>Legal issues</li> <li>Financial struggles</li> </ul> <p>The warning signs of suicidal behavior have not changed over the years, but due to technological advancements, the way in which people make others aware has changed slightly. For example, individuals who may be struggling with suicidal behaviors are now likely to use outlets such as social media and gaming to share their feelings.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="embed-responsive embed-responsive-16by9"><iframe allow="autoplay; fullscreen" allowfullscreen="" class="embed-responsive-item" frameborder="0" src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/296139327?byline=false&amp;title=false&amp;portrait=false"></iframe></div> <p>&nbsp;</p> <h3>Resources to Bookmark</h3> <p>Now is the best time to start building a collection of resources that you may need one day for yourself or a loved one. Suicidal behaviors can happen at any moment, so instead of waiting until you truly need them, I recommend finding some trusted resources now to become familiar with.</p> <p><strong>Resources to save:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://screening.mhanational.org/screening-tools">MHAScreening.org</a>: Offers free, confidential, and secure mental health screens. Taking a mental health screening is one of the quickest and easiest ways to determine whether you are experiencing symptoms of a mental health condition.</li> <li><a href="https://www.sprc.org/">Suicide Prevention Resource Center</a>: Offers resources including webinars and online courses.</li> <li><a href="https://afsp.org/">American Foundation for Suicide Prevention</a>: Advocates for suicide prevention research and funding.</li> <li><a href="https://www.psychhub.com/?utm_medium=partner-marketing&amp;utm_source=mha&amp;utm_campaign=organic-aquisition&amp;utm_content=link">Psych Hub</a>: An online platform providing free, engaging videos for individuals and healthcare providers about mental health, substance use, and suicide prevention.</li> <li><a href="https://psycharmor.org/">PsychArmor</a>: Provides resources to Americans so they can effectively engage with and support military service members, veterans, and their families.</li> <li><a href="https://protect-us.mimecast.com/s/PuSSCkRl0RtOgA5T2wvNH">American Association of Suicidology</a>- Offers free resources and information on national programs to support suicide prevention.&nbsp;</li> </ul> <p>With the knowledge of these topics, we can all be better mental health advocates and support systems for a loved one who may be struggling with suicidal behavior. Continue to arm yourself with knowledge because you may never know when you’ll need it and every single person has the ability to save a life.</p> <p>If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 to connect to a local crisis center or text MHA to 741741 to connect to a trained Crisis Counselor 24/7.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/suicide-prevention" hreflang="en">suicide prevention</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=16929&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="jfBC8FWui_fhUEnCBPX_mbuuQaOUdRTQgP55taxQFSA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Thu, 19 Sep 2019 15:14:44 +0000 JCheang 16929 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/what-you-need-know-about-suicidal-behavior-right-now#comments CMHIC 2019: 6 Student Leaders Transforming Mental Health on Campus https://www.mhanational.org/blog/cmhic-2019-6-student-leaders-transforming-mental-health-campus <span>CMHIC 2019: 6 Student Leaders Transforming Mental Health on Campus</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-09/cmhic%202020%20blog%20cover.png" alt="Headshots of the 6 members of the CMHIC." typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Wed, 09/11/2019 - 15:33</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">September 13, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>Mental Health America (MHA) is proud to announce the members of its 2019-2020 <a href="https://mhanational.org/collegiate-mental-health-innovation-council">Collegiate Mental Health Innovation Council</a> (CMHIC). CMHIC is dedicated to highlighting students who have created programs and lead advocacy efforts that fill gaps in traditional services and supports on their campuses.</p> <p>This year’s CMHIC is made up of six students who are addressing mental health across the country at the campus, local, and state level.</p> <p>Members will contribute to a report on issues in collegiate mental health and advice for other student leaders and campus mental health advocates, in addition to attending and presenting at the <a href="https://mhanational.org/2020/annual-conference">MHA national conference</a> in June 2020.</p> <p>Learn more about them below!</p> <p><img align="left" alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="241" src="/sites/default/files/Shivani.png" width="241" /></p> <p><strong>Shivani Nishar, Brown University (RI)</strong></p> <p>Shivani is gearing up for her final year at Brown University, where she studies Cognitive Science with a focus on minority mental health and childhood trauma. She hopes to complete a graduate program in Clinical Psychology and pursue clinical and policy work that addresses the intersection between race and mental health in contexts such as the prison industrial complex and immigrant detention centers. At Brown, Shivani serves as the Chair of Student Wellness on the Undergraduate Council of Students and as the Chapter Co-Coordinator of Project LETS at Brown, a national nonprofit created by and for mentally ill students. She has conducted research on adolescent borderline personality disorder at Butler Hospital and volunteers her time as a Peer Mental Health Advocate on campus. Having mental health experiences that were heavily influenced by her South Asian background, Shivani is dedicated to helping mentally ill young people of color navigate systems that were built to work against them. Her other passions in life include Ben &amp; Jerry's chocolate fudge brownie ice cream, talking about California's sunshine to no end, and buying summer dresses for her baby cousin!</p> <p><img align="left" alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="241" src="/sites/default/files/Juan.png" width="241" /></p> <p><strong>Juan Acosta, San Francisco State University (CA)</strong></p> <p>Juan is 22 years old. He’s originally from Woodland, CA but currently resides in San Francisco and is studying psychology at San Francisco State University. He began doing community service at age 13 and raked up more than 200+ community service hours by age 15, receiving recognition from non-profits and government agencies. Since then Juan has collaborated with Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation, drafted a historic LGBTQ+ proclamation for the city of Woodland, served as Assistant Director of the Queer Alliance Club at San Francisco State, and is a current member of the Youth Innovation Project Planning Committee for California’s Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><img align="left" alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="241" src="/sites/default/files/Braden.png" width="241" /></p> <p><strong>Braden Renke, Franklin &amp; Marshall College (PA)</strong></p> <p>Braden is a student athlete at Franklin &amp; Marshall College who is passionate about destigmatizing mental health both on campus and in her community. Braden plans to major in psychology, is the secretary of the Active Minds club on campus and plays field hockey and spring track &amp; field. Braden’s goal is to help grieving families cope with the loss of a loved one to suicide and ultimately help reduce the rate of suicides in her community. Her motivation to help others comes from the loss of her own father to suicide - she does not want others to have to deal with the heartbreak that she felt and wants people to know that they are not alone. Braden loves her dog, Sandy, that lives with her at Franklin &amp; Marshall and truly loves and values the relationships she has with her family. Braden loves to watch football, be active, eat great food, take trips to New York City and visit Central Market in downtown Lancaster.</p> <p><img align="left" alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="241" src="/sites/default/files/Marissa.png" width="241" /></p> <p><strong>Marissa Howdershelt, University of California, Riverside (CA)</strong></p> <p>Marissa is a third year student at UC Riverside pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Public Policy. Within this last academic year, she found her voice in student advocacy and discovered a true passion for speaking up for herself and uplifting often-forgotten narratives. Although her experience in advocacy is relatively new, the passion she has for advocacy, specifically in regard to mental health, is something she hopes to translate into her professional life. As a first generation college student, navigating this stage of her life is anything but easy, in part because she also has a chronic mental illness. However, she chooses to look at it as a strength and hopes that in spreading her narrative, others will also be empowered to share theirs, too. She hopes to advocate and uplift the community in the Inland Empire of Southern California, specifically with those of marginalized communities. She looks forward to starting this new journey as a member of the CMHIC!</p> <p><img align="left" alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="241" src="/sites/default/files/ananya.png" width="241" /></p> <p><strong>Ananya Cleetus, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (IL)</strong></p> <p>Ananya is a junior in Computer Science at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Having bipolar herself, she understands the importance of digital tools for managing mental health and developed Anemone, a crisis app for people experiencing mental health emergencies. She recently gave a TEDx talk at UIUC about her personal journey as a college student with a mental illness. Ananya developed a 3D-printed robotic prosthetic hand for leprosy victims in India and was invited to the White House to present her invention. She was also recognized for her start-up, Magikstra, at the Carnegie Science Awards as its youngest recipient ever, and the Mayor of Pittsburgh named a day after her in the city of Pittsburgh. When she's not coding or tinkering around, Ananya likes to make memes and bake pecan pies.</p> <p><img align="left" alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="241" src="/sites/default/files/joi-michelle.png" width="241" /></p> <p><strong>Joi-Michelle Rhodes, Oral Roberts University (OK)</strong></p> <p>Joi a native to Memphis, TN, is a senior Social Work student attending Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma. As a mental health advocate and stigma-fighter, she has ignited a movement to prioritize student mental health on her campus. Starting with a petition to hire more counselors for their understaffed counseling department, Joi started the conversation about the importance of student mental health. She is the founding president of Fight Club, a student-led mental health support group that creates a safe place for students to share experiences, support each other, and learn more about mental health. She plans to go on to graduate school next year and earn her Master’s in Social Work, with a concentration in clinical mental health. When she is not busy being an advocate, Joi enjoys music, art, friends, and naps</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/college" hreflang="en">college</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=12714&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="aKj-oQ9Cf7-SKYgoukVRzuSd3GmNy10fXghOiwhnzMU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Wed, 11 Sep 2019 19:33:25 +0000 JCheang 12714 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/cmhic-2019-6-student-leaders-transforming-mental-health-campus#comments 10 Things You Can Do When You’re Stressed https://www.mhanational.org/blog/10-things-you-can-do-when-youre-stressed <span>10 Things You Can Do When You’re Stressed</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-09/active-chain-link-fence-cyclone-fence-2413552_0.jpg" alt="Woman doing stretches in front of a fence" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Mon, 09/09/2019 - 12:13</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">September 09, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p>You might not be able to change what is stressing you out, but you can control how you react and respond to stress. If you notice that you’re showing signs of stress, here are some things you can do to help yourself:</p> <p><strong>1. Leave the room.</strong><br /> Getting up and removing yourself from the stressful situation can be a huge help. A brief change of scenery can help put some distance between you and your overwhelming feelings. If you’re in class, take a quick walk to the bathroom. Buried in homework? Take 60 seconds to walk to the kitchen for a glass of water.</p> <div style="width:100%;height:0;padding-bottom:54%;position:relative;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" class="giphy-embed" frameborder="0" height="100%" src="https://giphy.com/embed/wWqFBYUFNYGGs" style="position:absolute" width="100%"></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://giphy.com/gifs/sobbing-magic-number-wWqFBYUFNYGGs">via GIPHY</a></p> <p><strong>2. Organize. </strong><br /> Pick something small: your desk, your closet, or your to-do list are all great choices. Spend 20 minutes focused on tidying up—it will help you feel in control of something and give you a sense of accomplishment.</p> <p><img alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="450" src="/sites/default/files/doge_0.jpg" width="600" /></p> <p><a href="https://makeameme.org/meme/much-organize-so">via: makeameme.org</a></p> <p><strong>3. Do some breathing exercises. </strong><br /> Think about how you breathe when you’re relaxed—like when you’re about to fall asleep. Slow and deep, right? Forcing yourself to breathe this way is one of the best ways to bring on calmer feelings. Try <a href="https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/324417.php">4-7-8 breathing</a> to start: inhale through your nose for 4 seconds, hold for 7 seconds, exhale through your mouth for 8 seconds. <a href="https://apps.apple.com/us/app/breathe2relax/id425720246">Breathe2Relax</a> and <a href="http://breatheapp.co/">Breathe</a> are two good apps for guided breathing exercises.</p> <div style="width:100%;height:0;padding-bottom:100%;position:relative;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" class="giphy-embed" frameborder="0" height="100%" src="https://giphy.com/embed/l0NhWtOfbVze6KzFm" style="position:absolute" width="100%"></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://giphy.com/gifs/monday-destress-l0NhWtOfbVze6KzFm">via GIPHY</a></p> <p><strong>4. Write it out. </strong><br /> When your feelings start to bubble up and get overwhelming, putting them on paper can help you untangle them. Try a stream of consciousness exercise: 10 minutes of writing down all your thoughts without hesitating. Or make a list of things stressing you out—seeing them reduced to bullet points can help you think more clearly.</p> <p><img alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="300" src="/sites/default/files/Cute-cat-writing.jpg" width="600" /></p> <p><a href="https://whatculture.com/offbeat/pugs-vs-cats-6-reasons-world-became-obsessed-cute-animals?page=8">via: whatculture.com</a></p> <p><strong>5. Meditate. </strong><br /> Meditation triggers your body’s “relaxation response” – the complete opposite of the common stress response of “<a href="https://www.medicinenet.com/stress_meditation_may_reduce_stress/views.htm">fight or flight</a>” . It slows your breathing, blood pressure, and pulse—all things that go along with being in a calm state of mind. <a href="https://www.verywellmind.com/practice-basic-meditation-for-stress-management-3144789">Learn the basics here.</a> You can also try apps like <a href="https://www.calm.com/">Calm</a>, <a href="https://www.sanvello.com/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI58638ZLE5AIVD1mGCh3hmQ0wEAAYASAAEgLtefD_BwE">Sanvello</a>, and <a href="https://www.headspace.com/register-v1?utm_source=google&amp;utm_medium=cpc&amp;utm_campaign=1919439341&amp;utm_content=68065219102&amp;utm_term=379861035520&amp;headspace&amp;gclid=EAIaIQobChMIqpOT-5LE5AIVU1uGCh19awJ4EAAYASAAEgL0HPD_BwE">Headspace</a>.</p> <p><img alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="626" src="/sites/default/files/cute-funny-relaxing-koala-bear-yoga-pose_86629-260.jpg" width="626" /></p> <p><a href="https://www.freepik.com/premium-vector/cute-funny-relaxing-koala-bear-yoga-pose_5098046.htm#page=1&amp;query=animal%20meditating&amp;position=11">via: freepik.com</a></p> <p><strong>6. Watch something funny.</strong><br /> Putting on a funny show or video will help take your mind off of everything going on for a little bit. And laughter really can be the best medicine! It’s known to reduce mental <a href="https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/articles/200504/laughter-the-best-medicine">stress</a> and bring on feelings of relaxation.</p> <div style="width:100%;height:0;padding-bottom:56%;position:relative;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" class="giphy-embed" frameborder="0" height="100%" src="https://giphy.com/embed/u36Ow6jBvWCFW" style="position:absolute" width="100%"></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://giphy.com/gifs/laughing-shark-disney-u36Ow6jBvWCFW">via GIPHY</a></p> <p><strong>7. Exercise. </strong><br /> One of the best ways to handle built-up stress is to physically <a href="https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/exercising-to-relax">release it</a>. Lace up your sneakers and head outside for a run--your feet pounding against the pavement is sure to help you get some frustration out.</p> <div style="width:100%;height:0;padding-bottom:58%;position:relative;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" class="giphy-embed" frameborder="0" height="100%" src="https://giphy.com/embed/649GOAqxHZiLK" style="position:absolute" width="100%"></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://giphy.com/gifs/cat-toy-mixed-gif-649GOAqxHZiLK">via GIPHY</a></p> <p><strong>8. Write down 3 things you’re grateful for. </strong><br /> Showing gratitude is known to improve mood and help you better handle <a href="https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/giving-thanks-can-make-you-happier">adversity</a>–so not only is it a good way to reduce your immediate stress, but it can help you keep your future stress level down, too. And when you write down a few things you’re thankful for, you can always look back at your list when you start to feel that stress bubbling up again.</p> <p><img alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="633" src="/sites/default/files/blessed%20hedgehog.jpg" width="800" /></p> <p><a href="https://i.imgur.com/C460VQh.jpg">via: imgur</a></p> <p><strong>9. Talk it out. </strong><br /> Sometimes when we’re stressed, everything little problem seems like a big deal. Talking to a friend, parent, teacher, coach, or someone else you trust can help you get out of your own head and see things from a different point of view. Try using the <a href="https://www.notokapp.com/">NotOK app</a> to help you reach out to others when you’re feeling overly stressed. <a href="https://mhanational.org/time-talk-tips-talking-about-your-mental-health">Click here for tips on how to start the conversation.</a></p> <p><img alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" height="437" src="/sites/default/files/baby%20bunnies.jpg" width="525" /></p> <p><a href="https://www.buzzfeed.com/zinepak/21-cutest-baby-animal-hugs-fsce">via: buzzfeed.com</a></p> <p><strong>10. Light a candle or diffuse essential oils. </strong><br /> Scents can trigger very powerful emotional responses, and some are particularly good at inducing relaxation. Try lavender, lemon, and jasmine scents – all known for alleviating <a href="https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/urban-survival/201604/six-aromatherapy-essential-oils-stress-relief-and-sleep">tension.</a></p> <div style="width:100%;height:0;padding-bottom:56%;position:relative;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" class="giphy-embed" frameborder="0" height="100%" src="https://giphy.com/embed/u5NCE7PLFg4XS" style="position:absolute" width="100%"></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://giphy.com/gifs/822-u5NCE7PLFg4XS">via GIPHY</a></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/4mind4body" hreflang="en">4mind4body</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-simplenews-term field--type-entity-reference field--label-hidden field__item"><a href="/newsletter/newsletter" hreflang="en">Newsletter</a></div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=12501&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="2BSbqWMQUVVuP7aKAE0pzU2ezKDwIKVRxgoFrXWZljo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Mon, 09 Sep 2019 16:13:47 +0000 JCheang 12501 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/10-things-you-can-do-when-youre-stressed#comments Thank you, Rusty Selix https://www.mhanational.org/blog/thank-you-rusty-selix <span>Thank you, Rusty Selix</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-08/rusty%20and%20debbie.png" alt="Rusty Selix and Debbie Plotnick" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Thu, 08/29/2019 - 14:21</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">August 29, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Paul Gionfriddo, MHA President and CEO</em></p> <p>The Mental Health America community lost a friend, a mentor, a fierce advocate, and a family member when we lost Rusty Selix to ALS this week.</p> <p>The accolades have poured in from many individuals and organizations who he touched during his productive life. They’ve cited his contributions to MHA in its California affiliates, to NCBH and its California association, to the Steinberg Center in Sacramento, and to the people of the state of California. They will benefit for years to come for his far-sighted, successful ballot proposition that pours billions of dollars into preventive services for mental health.</p> <p>Rusty was a policy giant. He had a sense of creativity and a passion for policy innovation. He could think big policy thoughts. And he could manage building all the little pathways to bring them to a successful conclusion.</p> <p>Rusty earned his place in our memories for these, and more than earned the public recognition he received.</p> <p>But he earned his place in our hearts for much more. His empathy. His engagement. His counsel. His spirit. His joy.</p> <p>I was introduced to MHA through my wife Pam, who worked for two MHA affiliates. When she arrived at her first annual conference nearly twenty years ago, Rusty was one of the first people to take her under his wing. He sat and had drinks with her. He brought together friends. He talked about the Grateful Dead. He laughed. He made her feel comfortable.</p> <p>That’s what Rusty did for me, too. When I was new to my job five years ago and pushing forward with changes at MHA – our screening program, our B4Stage4 launch, our children’s and school initiatives, our plan to engage with federal policymakers to get good mental health reform legislation crafted and passed – he always looked forward toward the goal, supported the effort needed to get there, and offered his advice and encouragement. I quickly figured out that if Rusty thought it was possible for us to do these things, then it was.</p> <p>Months after Rusty lost his ability to write, he was still using assistive technology to give me advice. In a thoughtful email to me a few weeks ago, he laid out a strategy for pushing forward with school-based mental health initiatives. Long after most of us would have retreated into ourselves, he was still working for the generation who would come next.</p> <p>Shortly after Rusty was diagnosed, I sent him an email sharing some of my own family’s challenges at that time. I talked about the hope with which we were trying to live and the comfort we were trying to find in the present, without too much worrying about a future we could not control.</p> <p>His response touched me:</p> <p>“I want you to share my letter with the full board and staff and I hope that when you do so you will also share your response because I know everyone gets a lot out of your open sharing of the challenges you had to face, which seemed to be more than just about anyone I know.</p> <p>“I feel very strongly supported by family, friends and colleagues, who universally seem to agree that I'm approaching this the best possible way.</p> <p>“My nature is to be an eternal optimist, and there is much to be hopeful about.</p> <p>“Managing my life with the presence of this disease inside me is now my primary activity. But my passion for advancing our cause is just as strong as ever and making B4 stage4 the norm instead of the exception is the key to accomplishing all our goals.</p> <p>“Best regards and looking forward to many more years working together.”</p> <p>Best regards, Rusty. Thank you for always thinking more about others than yourself. And thank you for your continuing lessons in hope and optimism. We’re all looking forward to many more years working together with you in spirit.</p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/policy" hreflang="en">policy</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=11325&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="Lwi829HSAYjbswuUvFfNM4Hn-uXBtzt77RTZnJmXCuA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Thu, 29 Aug 2019 18:21:55 +0000 JCheang 11325 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/thank-you-rusty-selix#comments Medicaid's 54th Birthday https://www.mhanational.org/blog/medicaids-54th-birthday <span>Medicaid&#039;s 54th Birthday</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-08/care-connection-device-1282308%20%281%29.jpg" alt="Care Connection Device" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Thu, 08/29/2019 - 14:32</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">July 31, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Caren Howard, MHA Advocacy Manager</em></p> <p><em><img alt="" data-entity-type="" data-entity-uuid="" src="/sites/default/files/care-connection-device-1282308.jpg" style="width:100%" /></em><strong>Medicaid Anniversary</strong></p> <p>Fifty-four years ago, on July 30, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Social Security Amendments Act of 1965 establishing the Medicare and Medicaid public health insurance programs. The bill was the start of a commitment federal government made to its citizens to provide a safety net to the uninsured who did not have a way to pay for health care.</p> <p><strong>How Would Medicaid Help Me and My Loved Ones?</strong></p> <p>Over the past five decades, Medicaid has become a bedrock of our nation’s health system. It is the number one payer of behavioral health, paying for nearly one-third of all mental health and substance use services. It also covers nearly half of all births and half of children with special health care needs.</p> <p>Medicaid offers key benefits that many private insurers won’t cover. For instance, <a href="https://www.medicaid.gov/medicaid/benefits/epsdt/index.html">Early Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Treatment</a> (EPDST) is a comprehensive benefit for children that may prevent the development or exacerbation of mental health conditions. We know that mental health problems affect one in five young people at any given time, and about <a href="http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/issues/mental-health-america-access-care-data">two-thirds of them</a> are not getting the help they need. Early identification, accurate diagnosis, and effective treatment can help young people to more quickly recover and benefit from their education, to develop positive relationships, to gain access to employment, and ultimately to lead more meaningful and productive lives.</p> <p>Medicaid also covers three crucial supports for adults: 1) <a href="http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/conditions/what-peer">peer support</a> for personal recovery, 2) <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4170889/">vocational rehabilitation</a> for those wishing to return to school or work, and 3) <a href="https://www.samhsa.gov/homelessness-programs-resources/hpr-resources/housing-shelter">transitional housing</a> services for those leaving institutional care to return to their community. With these kinds of supports in place, a person’s overall health care costs can be reduced, and it may mean the difference between a fulfilling life in recovery and remission in the shadows.</p> <p>In 2010, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) increased the reach of Medicaid two ways:</p> <ul> <li>By giving states flexibility to change their Medicaid program design to better meet the needs of their state through the 1115 Medicaid waiver program (which “waives” standard Medicaid rules and allows states to operate the program under special rules, provided this does not increase overall costs).</li> <li>By offering additional federal funding to states to cover non-traditional populations that would be otherwise uninsured (i.e., now dependent-less adults making up to 138% of the federal poverty level could qualify for coverage).</li> </ul> <p>When more people have insurance to help them pay for their chronic and acute health needs, they end up living longer, more productive lives. They are more likely to find and keep work that contributes to the community. Thus, Medicaid helps increase access to care and reduce the strain of uncompensated care on health systems. Rather than becoming sicker, and waiting until a crisis or emergency, it has been shown that individuals and families with Medicaid find help and get better sooner.</p> <p><strong>How Can We Protect our Medicaid Programs?</strong></p> <p>We must reinforce the original intent of the law— to provide a safety net for people who are uninsured.</p> <p>We must reject policy changes that arbitrarily cap or cut funding, turn funding into a block grant, or create additional work documentation requirements as an eligibility barrier that dis-enrolls people from their coverage.</p> <p><strong>If this issue hits home for you, <a href="https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1H4mLnyxFTmuEScnP5HRRw2wIT70wDnaf">take action to contact your elected officials</a> online, via telephone, or through the press, to tell them to protect Medicaid and not to undercut the families and children it serves.</strong></p> <p>We would like to see Medicaid continue to be a safety net for people who need it for another fifty-four years. Let’s celebrate the success of Medicaid and all those who live better lives because of it!</p> <h3>Further Reading:&nbsp;</h3> <p><strong>What Is Medicaid?</strong></p> <p>Medicaid is a voluntary health insurance program for the public that was designed to cover individuals who were otherwise excluded from purchasing private market insurance, such as: persons with disabilities, persons impoverished, pregnant women, or persons without geographical access to traditional private providers. It also covered long term care services that Medicare did not.</p> <p>Medicaid is an entitlement program. It guarantees it will cover services for those who meets eligibility criteria (generally based on income), and it limits how much beneficiaries must pay out of pocket for their care. It is funded by both the federal government and a state, but it is solely <a href="https://www.cbpp.org/blog/on-its-anniversary-a-look-at-how-medicaid-helps-people-in-every-state">administered by the state</a>.</p> <p>In some cases, people are dually eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid and use both programs at the same time. For instance, they may be lower-income seniors who qualify for Medicare and also have a long-term disability that requires services covered by Medicaid. In this case, Medicaid covers the Medicare co-pays and other cost-sharing payments, Medicare pays for the acute care hospital, medical, and prescription drug services it covers, and Medicaid pays for the long-term care that Medicare doesn’t cover.</p> <p>To learn more about Medicaid, and to see if your loved one may qualify, visit:&nbsp;<a href="https://www.medicaid.gov/">https://www.medicaid.gov/</a></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/policy" hreflang="en">policy</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=11326&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="Rm72ecTLs-kGnrXIBlbbxN38cVDQUUxfQqhlrUguSaA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Thu, 29 Aug 2019 18:32:40 +0000 JCheang 11326 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/medicaids-54th-birthday#comments To Improve Mental Health, We Need To Take On Social and Racial Injustice https://www.mhanational.org/blog/improve-mental-health-we-need-take-social-and-racial-injustice <span>To Improve Mental Health, We Need To Take On Social and Racial Injustice</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-post-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <div class="item-image"> <img src="/sites/default/files/2019-08/54432770_794173240952652_8715628132767367168_n.jpg" alt="Boys in Community Center" typeof="foaf:Image" /> </div> </div> <span><span lang="" about="/users/jcheang" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">JCheang</span></span> <span>Thu, 08/29/2019 - 14:57</span> <div class="field field--name-field-post-date field--type-datetime field--label-hidden field__item">July 22, 2019 </div> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field__item"><p><em>By Ruben Cantu and Dana Fields-Johnson, Prevention Institute </em></p> <p>The International District of Albuquerque, New Mexico is a majority Latino neighborhood that vibrates with life. It’s a hub of family-owned bakeries, restaurants, and shops that showcase the distinct origin stories of its inhabitants. But the community also faces challenges that have created high levels of economic and other kinds of stress for residents, which have translated into growing concerns about high suicide rates for young Latino men as well as substance misuse and community trauma.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The challenges in Albuquerque’s International District are far too familiar to many communities of color with low household incomes in the United States: high rates of poverty, under-resourced schools, limited job opportunities, dilapidated infrastructure, unsafe streets, and high levels of violence.</p> <p>What’s less familiar is the connection these community conditions have with mental health and wellbeing.</p> <p>It’s time for us to start recognizing injustices like racism, anti-immigrant bias, heterosexism, and other forms of discrimination as social injustices and obstacles to mental health and wellbeing. We can’t ignore these injustices if we want all communities to thrive. That means starting to implement approaches to mental health that help remedy the community conditions that cause or exacerbate problems and support communities of color, immigrants and refugees, and the LGBTQ community.</p> <p>“Stress is too deeply woven into our lives,” says Xavier Barraza of Together4Brothers, a lead organization of Making Connections: International District, which goes by MC: ID. And healthy outlets to cope with stress aren’t as readily available in the International District as are alcohol and cigarettes in neighborhood stores.</p> <p>To counteract this on-the-ground reality, MC:ID creates opportunities that emphasize supportive relationships and shared leadership. These range from cooking classes to project meetings. Every MC:ID strategy, activity, and decision is led by young men of color, who participate in workshops to strengthen their understanding of community determinants of health, social-emotional health, and policy strategy, all while building healthy relationships with one another.</p> <p>As peer educators, these young men support each other “to take action in their community and be the problem solvers,” said Raul C., one of the many young men who contribute to MC:ID’s shared vision. They are paid for their work, gain invaluable professional skills, advocate for their community, and cultivate leadership; these are all elements they have identified for improving their wellbeing.</p> <p>Like MC: ID, there are other initiatives throughout the US that are taking on community conditions that are harmful to good mental health among people of color, the LGBTQ community, and other groups that have been marginalized by mainstream culture and policies. In Tacoma-Pierce County, near Seattle, Washington, the health department partners with grassroots organizations to strengthen social connections and community resilience among men and boys and LGBTQ people of color in communities where adverse childhood and community experiences are widespread. The initiative has served close to 500 individuals with culturally grounded activities such as the All My Relations program for indigenous youth, and Paddles Up, Families Strong, which ties urban natives to deep cultural practices such as the Tribal Canoe Journey.</p> <p>The centerpiece of the Tacoma-Pierce County program, called 253 Making Connections, is a participatory budgeting process through which community members—who have a deep understanding of what types of support their community needs—have decided to fund people of color-led grassroots organizations to lead the activities described above. This model shifts power from organizations back to communities, distributing leadership and decision-making more equitably.</p> <p>The programs in Albuquerque and Tacoma-Pierce County, both of which are part of the Making Connections for Mental Health and Wellbeing Among Men and Boys initiative, funded by the Movember Foundation, have several common elements:</p> <ul> <li>They intentionally engage community members, particularly those who have been historically excluded, in determining solutions and strategies that promote healing, build trust, and foster resilience. This is because people with lived experience bring a deep understanding and awareness of their own needs, which helps them design effective solutions.</li> <li>They understand that trauma is a collective experience and therefore healing is strongest when it’s a community experience. Healing can take place during group conversations, recreational or vocational activities, civic engagement, and culturally grounded rituals. Artistic and cultural expression can be especially powerful conveyors for understanding a group’s trauma and pain and can also serve as doorways to healing and resilience.</li> <li>They often support peer networks and counselors to open a channel of communication with community members who may not feel comfortable with traditional mental health structures. Peer networks have the additional benefit of creating leadership opportunities for community members and fostering social connection for everyone involved in them.</li> </ul> <p>We’ve had the privilege of working with a dozen communities who are bringing together partners in the housing, education, and social services worlds with grassroots organizations and, most importantly, community members to improve mental health at the community level. The power and creativity of these approaches is truly impressive, and they deserve more attention, not just during minority mental health month, but all year long.</p> <hr /> <p><em>Ruben Cantu and Dana Fields-Johnson work at the national nonprofit <a href="https://www.preventioninstitute.org/">Prevention Institute</a>. They both support the <a href="https://www.preventioninstitute.org/projects/making-connections-mental-health-and-wellbeing-among-men-and-boys">Making Connections for Mental Health and Wellbeing Among Men and Boys initiative</a>.</em></p> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field__label">Tags</div> <div class="field__items"> <div class="field__item"><a href="/tags/minority-mental-health" hreflang="en">minority mental health</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <h2>Add new comment</h2> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderForm" arguments="0=node&amp;1=11327&amp;2=comment_node_blog_post&amp;3=comment_node_blog_post" token="LmOpZYEylO_yvHBbUZIH5H6Gc0HYuS833LssvL_9LR0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </section> Thu, 29 Aug 2019 18:57:40 +0000 JCheang 11327 at https://www.mhanational.org https://www.mhanational.org/blog/improve-mental-health-we-need-take-social-and-racial-injustice#comments