Wednesday, May 29, 2018 – May is National Mental Health Awareness Month, and it has certainly been a busy month in Warren and Forest Counties. The month started off with the first ever Human Services Summit, which brought together numerous human Services providers and interested groups to discuss how to better deliver services in Warren County. That effort was continued with a variety of outreach efforts including special Facebook Profile Frames for persons wanting to show support for Mental Health Awareness on social media. During the month students in the Warren and Forest County School Districts, as well as local nonprofit businesses, created trees which were symbols to promote Mental Health Awareness and the concept of “Growing Strong Together”. Now, images of those trees, along with posters and other creative pieces will be collected and displayed as a part of the “Mental Health Symposium” to be held at the Warren Public Library in the Slater Room from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm on Thursday, May 31st.
The Mental Health Symposium will have several vendors, displays and speakers related to the Human Services and Mental Health fields. The featured speaker, Tracy Carney, CPS, CPRP, is a Senior Recovery and Resiliency Specialist working for Community Care Behavioral Health out of Williamsport. Her presentation is titled “My Hike to Recovery: Forging a Trail of Hope” where she discusses two journeys she has been on in the past 10 years; her journey from Mental Illness to Wellness and her journey of hiking the Appalachian Trail. Ms. Carney highlights the Recovery Principles of Hope, Personal Responsibility, Peer Support, Choice, Education, Empowerment, Self-Advocacy and Spirituality.
“The goal of the presentation is to educate about mental illness,” said Ms. Carney, “and to inspire hope that people can and do recover.”
Commissioner Eggleston stated, “This is a fine way to close Mental Health Awareness month. I am very excited for our featured speaker and to showcase all of the wonderful artwork contributed by our students and community leaders.”
Snacks and refreshments will be available, and the public is encouraged to attend. The event is meant to be a celebration of all things related to mental health. Numerous organizations have contributed artwork and “trees” including the Achievement Center, Beacon Light, Barber National Institute, Independent Living, East and West Forest County Schools, Eisenhower Elementary, Sheffield Elementary, Warren Area Elementary, Youngsville Elementary, Experience Inc., Family Services, Hospice of Warren County, and Warren State Hospital among many others.
For more information on the events and projects being conducted as a part of Mental Health Awareness Month please visit the website http://growingstrong.info or call (814-706-8343) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) Commissioner Eggleston.