May is Mental Health Month, and Lake Regional Health System is partnering with several local organizations to present Mental Health Awareness Days in Camden, Miller and Morgan counties. The goal of Mental Health Awareness Days is to raise awareness and educate the public about mental health while striving to remove the stigma that surrounds mental illness.
“When you or someone you love has a mental health concern, finding support is critical but often difficult,” said Billye Bennett, R.N., Lake Regional education coordinator. “These Mental Health Awareness Days will help connect participants with local resources. Plus, these will be positive events, where people with mental health challenges will find hope and encouragement. We want people to know that mental illnesses are common and treatable.”
The Mental Health Awareness Days will take place as follows:
- Camden County Mental Health Awareness Day, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, May 2, Camden County Library Meeting Room, 89 Rodeo Road. Event partners include Camden County Health Department, Compass Health, Ozarks Rural Health Network and University of Missouri Extension.
- Miller County Mental Health Awareness Day, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, May 6, Eldon Community Center, 309 E. 2nd St. Event partners include Capital Region Medical Center, Compass Health, Miller County Health Department, Ozarks Rural Health Network and University of Missouri Extension.
- Morgan County Mental Health Awareness Day, 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday, May 16, Morgan County Health Department, 104 W. Lafayette St., Versailles. Event partners include Capital Region Medical Center, Burrell Behavioral Health, Morgan County Health Department, Prairie Hills/Katy Trail Community Health – Versailles and University of Missouri Extension.
All three events will provide free, confidential screenings for depression, anxiety and suicide, as well as for alcohol and drug abuse. In addition, interactive exhibits will explore how to boost mental health and general wellness. Participants will learn about benefits of animal companionship; spirituality and religion; humor; work-life balance; and recreation and social connections. For more information on each event, visit lakeregional.com/events or call Lake Regional Community Outreach at 573.348.8222.
Mental health was one of the three greatest needs identified in the 2018 Community Health Needs Assessment, a report produced by Lake Regional Health System and collaborating community partners (substance abuse and ability to pay for care were the other identified priorities). In response, Lake Regional is providing new opportunities for Lake Regional staff and the public to learn how to recognize mental illness, as well as how to help someone in crisis. View the 2018 Community Health Needs Assessment, as well as the Implementation Plan, at lakeregional.com/reports.