To promote mental wellness in our community.
Every person has access to quality, integrated behavioral health care and knows “It’s Okay to Get Help!’; Every child is assessed for behavioral health problems and receives preventive treatment; Every doctor understands the connection between mind and body and uses this understanding to improve treatment outcomes, and; every policymaker knows that spending on behavioral health services improves overall community health.
What we do
The Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County, Inc., a non-profit organization, is dedicated to leadership in promoting mental wellness for children, adults, and families, and providing advocacy for those with mental disorders through education and cooperative planning.
Since its inception in 1949, the Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County (MHA) has been dedicated to improving the lives of people who are touched by mental illness and working to improve mental wellness in our community. MHA is working with community partners to prevent mental health disorders and to improve understanding about issues related to mental health and well-being. Through advocacy, education, and outreach, MHA seeks to improve access to mental health services for all who need them.
Current programs and initiatives at MHA include:
- Care Access Navigation SErvices System (CANSS) provides mental health and basic needs screening, referrals and follow up to thousands of people each year who need to be linked to behavioral health services and other resources. We serve between more than1000 people by phone or in person each and up to 40,000 people visit our online resource center www.mhapbc.org each year.
- Listen to Children, a school-based mentoring program since 1982 serving on average 300 children in Kindergarten through 8th grade each year with over 80 trained volunteers in over 50 schools;
- MPower for teens, a psychology club and community action program since 2009 in high school serving 50-100 teens each year
- Be Merge Program, a primary and behavioral healthcare integration initiative that is providing resources and technical assistance to doctors, nurses, to recognize behavioral health problems in the primary care and hospital settings;
- Peer Place, a support center and peer mentoring program, which brings in more than 550 people with serious mental illness each month and has over 330 unduplicated participants each year;
- Transition from Jail to Community Project, a new collaborative demonstration effort t to transition county inmates back into the community and reduce recidivism rates for 50 men in south Palm Beach County.
- Our “It’s Okay to Get Help!” Campaign fights the stigma of mental illness and has produced public service announcements for television that have been viewed by thousands of people.
In addition, the MHA has an active Mental Health Learning and Resource Center that serves the entire community by providing resources and education to raise awareness and effect change. We anticipate that we will have more than 1,000 people visit our Learning and Resource center in 2012 for Lunch and Learns and professional workshops. The MHA serves the entire population of Palm Beach County.
MHA Public Policy, Advocacy, and Education
The Mental Health Association works with community partners to advocate for solutions that will improve the lives of people living with mental illness. MHA works with public policy leaders, service providers, researchers, advocates, consumers, and educators to providing the latest news and information about mental health and wellness. Among the priorities of the Mental Health Association are:
- Increasing understanding about mental health issues among all residents of the county to reduce the stigma of mental illness.
- Countywide mental health system capacity-building that will lead to more coordinated care delivery systems among all providers of mental health services, including independent practitioners, primary care and mental health clinics, hospitals, food and shelter providers, prisons and jails, employers, and educators.
- Partnership program development. MHA works with a variety of community partners to implement targeted strategies to address critical community mental health needs.
- Increasing assistance and support to special populations such as caregivers, veterans and their families, older adults, children and families, populations who are reentering society, specific ethnic/racial groups, and many more.
- Including mental health issues in the Health Care Reform and other policy discussions.
- Improving mental health wellness support and information and referral resources for all in the community.