Great Lakes Bay Oct 2019 Issue

Page 12



Great Lakes Bay Region Mental Health Partnership TACKLING MENTAL ILLNESS … TOGETHER he statistics are alarming. One in five adults in America experiences a mental illness in a given year. Nearly one in 25 adults in America lives with a serious mental illness. Perhaps even more startling, one-half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of 14.1 But mental illness is only part of the challenge. Getting proper care and treatment is also problematic – and sometimes out of reach. Take a look at the Problem Pipeline below, which shows various obstacles that get in the way as people in need seek help for mental health issues.

4. Working Adult Employee Assistance

Collaborating for Change The Great Lakes Bay Region Mental Health Partnership was formed in early 2018 as a collaborative initiative to address the mental health crisis in our region. Key supporters of the partnership include the Friends and Family of Chad William Dunn, Central Michigan University College of Medicine, University of Michigan Depression Center and Dow Chemical Co. Foundation. The partnership is working with community stakeholders and resources to ensure that everyone knows where to turn for help when struggling with a mental health issue, seeks help without fear of stigma and receives prompt access to excellent care.

Taking Action The partnership recently hosted a collaborative effort designed to engage representatives from every county and every part of the Great Lakes Bay Region. Seven work groups were formed to pool talent and resources – and take action. 1. Youth Prevention – Investigating best prevention practices, with plans to begin implementation in winter 2019. 2. Youth Information – Sharing information about mental health challenges and where/ how to get help for K-12 schools, starting in fall 2019. 3. Stigma Campaign – Exploring awareness and stigma campaigns to be implemented across the region, starting in fall 2019.

Program – Began taking action in spring 2019 when Fisher Contracting Co. developed a program to address stigma, provide education and resources, raise awareness and expand availability of mental health services through the company’s employee assistance program. Plans are to scale this model program to other employers and make it available to the Great Lakes Bay Region in 2020. 5. Working Adult Wellness – Researching how to create a culture of belonging, so employees can bring their “whole self” to work, with plans to implement starting in winter 2019. 6. Mental Health Providers: Wellness – Developing wellness resources for providers who need mental health support for themselves, with plans to implement starting in winter 2019. 7. Mental Health Providers: Community – Developing ways to make connections and create a sense of community among mental health care providers, with plans to implement starting in fall 2019. These groups are keenly focused on eliminating all barriers to excellent mental health care and treatment. Together, they are making a difference. If you would like to join a work group, send an email to info@ Dr. Matt Samocki Director, Great Lakes Bay Region Mental Health Partnership

1. NAMI. (2015). Mental Health by the Numbers. Retrieved from