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Event to highlight mental health resources

Crow Wing Energized is hosting a Community Mental Health Resource Fair from 8:30 am to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 29, at First Lutheran Church in Brainerd.

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Contributed / Metro Newspaper Service
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When Essentia Health conducted its Community Health Needs Assessment this spring, one area identified was our mental well-being.

When people were asked to rate the number of days they experienced ‘good mental health,’ it was noted people were experiencing fewer ‘good’ mental health days in the month compared to the survey conducted in 2018.

When comparing the data to 2014, it should be noted we actually made some improvement in this trend, which could be attributed to the following: Stigma reduction campaigns like Make It OK; the fact that people and organizations recognize the importance of connectiveness; and workplaces, faith communities, and schools are more willing to talk about mental health.

One of our strategies we identified to help improve our overall mental well-being was to encourage help-seeking behaviors through stigma-reduction campaigns (Make It OK and ACEs education) to reduce stigma and raise awareness of existing community resources.

A second strategy identified is to build resilience, optimism, and hopefulness through tools and programs. Our ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences) and Resilience Coalition conducted 104 one-on-one interviews with community members this past winter. The 100 Community Conversation is part of the More Resilient Minnesota initiative.

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One of the goals of this project was to reach out to people closest to the problem and furthest for decision-making. The information we gathered during this initiative was very insightful; we will share the findings at the Community Mental Health Resource Fair. The next phase of the project is to engage our community to develop a community resilience plan.

Crow Wing Energized is hosting a Community Mental Health Resource Fair from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 29, at First Lutheran Church in Brainerd. We plan to share information from the 100 Community Conversations project and the new 988# at this event. Participants will be able to attend sessions to learn more about stigma reduction campaigns like Make It OK and Changing the Narrative.

Sessions on suicide prevention will be offered including Postvention, QPR (Question, Persuade, and Refer), and Lethal Means and S.A.V.E. lead by the Veterans Administration. Participants can learn more about Resourceful, Naloxone training, and ACEs.

Lastly, we will begin to recruit a local Community Resilience Planning Team that can complete the Community Resilience Plan. This plan should reflect priorities of Collaborative representatives, partners, and community members, including those who provided input at our one-on-one interviews using the 100 Community Conversations Interview Tool. We will have mental health resources available to participants.

This will be a great opportunity to learn more about the mental health resources that are available in our area. We would encourage participants to consider getting trained to lead these classes or to share this information at their workplaces and faith communities. CWE can help coordinate the training and help cover the cost of training. This day long event is free – a light lunch will be served. Registration is required; to register: Community Mental Health Resource Fair - Crow Wing Energized

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