May is Mental Health Month. Nearly 44 million adults in America, about 1 in 5, experience mental illness in a given year. Of those, 10 million live with a serious mental illness
In observance of Mental Health Month, organizations and individuals across the nation are raising awareness, educating communities and fighting stigma surrounding mental health issues and treatment.
Our team at Meridian has kicked off its involvement in Mental Health Month by participating in The Amazing Give, which ended yesterday. This event, hosted by The Community Foundation of North Central Florida, allows nonprofits to receive cash grants based on their fundraising totals. Meridian placed 10th in dollar amount raised, for a grand total of $4,140. We also received a matching grant from BBVA Compass Global for $250 of that total.
Additionally, Meridian will partner with AnArtists Community Group to host an open house and recovery art exhibit on May 19 from 5:15 to 6:30 p.m. at the new administration building at the Meridian Behavioral Healthcare campus in Gainesville, 1565 SW Williston Road. The event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served.
Throughout May, Meridian will offer free mental health first aid training sessions in Gainesville and Live Oak. Similar to First Aid and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for medical emergencies, Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) trains participants to identify and respond to potential mental illness or substance use disorders until appropriate professional help can arrive.
Adult trainings will be held on Monday, May 9, at the Gainesville Police Department, located at 413 NW 8th Ave., and Friday, May 27, at Meridian Behavioral Healthcare, located at 4300 SW 13th Street.
Youth Mental Health First Aid is designed to teach parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, peers, neighbors, health and human services workers and other caring citizens how to help an adolescent (ages 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis. These sessions will be held on Friday, May 13, and Friday, May 20, at Meridian Behavioral Healthcare in Gainesville.
The Live Oak Youth MHFA training session will be held on Friday, May 13, at the Suwanee County Health Department located at 915 Nobles Ferry Road
Classes run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with an hour-long lunch break and are limited to 20 participants per class. Pre-registration is required. To register, visit: https://www.mbhci.org/register-now-for-a-free-mental-health-first-aid-course/