An update on the Behavioral Health Initiative
“We fill in the gaps among us, and we let those of us who feel strong enough today to engage the fight for those who need to catch their breath and renew their strength.”
– John Pavlovitz
Dear Foundation Friends,
You helped create a safety net two years ago. With quick action, innovation, and funding, this community assembled ways to get essential goods to those who needed them. Watching our community rise at that time felt buoyant, like we could weave hope into something tangible.
Now we are laser focused on behavioral health because we are just beginning to see how the past two years have affected our community. Are you caring for yourself, taking the time and resources that you need to be okay? I hope you are.
We are making good progress on the Behavioral Health Initiative that I outlined in January. I thought I’d bring you up to date.
- Form a new steering committee. Done. We added voices to the group, brought new people up to speed, and the group is moving forward on prevention, treatment, and crisis, and will discuss how to capture and measure all we learn. The steering committee has a solid understanding of who they are and how they want to work together.
- Understand the gaps. We still have work to do here through focus groups that will help us understand the experiences of those in our community and how best to improve access to resources. Timing of the focus groups is likely late summer.
- Support through coordination. Progress. We have posted the new position that will support and coordinate across all organizations working in behavioral health. This position will be housed within the Community Foundation and we are excited for the right person to come on board.
- Build a better crisis system. We are still working on how to provide better acute crisis stabilization and treatment for community members. In the meantime, our health and counseling systems will continue to provide for individuals experiencing mental crises. We will keep attention on this important community need.
- Establish working groups. Within the steering committee and with the help of other community members, we will form working groups that focus on certain aspects of behavioral health. We will launch the first working group by June.
I promise to update you as we make progress on behavioral health. You help keep us accountable as we create a system of connected safety nets to fill in the gaps between us. Together, we make our community stronger.