TOGETHER WE ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE!
Rotarians for Mental Health brings together resources and information from Rotary Clubs with the purpose of bringing awareness and taking action around mental health and substance use disorders.
We’ve created this site just for you! We encourage clubs who are already doing projects in the mental health field to tell us about them. We want to share them with other clubs who might be inspired. If you’re stumped at the “how-to,” follow the links below for project coordinators and tips.
Here are examples of club projects. . . the Club Projects tab has more:
• Boulder Rotary: This club has focused sharply on changing the conversation around mental health, both within the club and in the community. They created a Mental Wellness Initiative in 2015, and have concentrated their significant energy on projects, speakers, and programs ever since.
• Boulder Valley Rotary: The club provides “scholarships” to clients participating in the Mental Health Partners culinary, custodial and office skills job training programs. The stipends cover meals and uniform cleaning.
• Commerce City Rotary: Members have devotedly distributed more than 30,000 mental health and awareness cards in their community. They know these cards have saved lives. The cards contain crisis centers and phone lines.
• Denver: Known fondly as Club 31 (the 31st club formed in Rotary), this club has been a leader in what began as Rotary Mental Health Initiatives and is now Rotarians for Mental Health. One of their many approaches to education on mental health was “fellowship meetings” on mental health topics – including the sharing of personal stories.
• Denver Mile High: They teach BrainWise, a neurocognitive development program to high-risk teens and others.
• Golden Rotary: Here’s another club strongly focused on mental health. They sponsored classes in Mental Health First Aid in their community in partnership with the Jefferson Center for Mental Health. They also organized a community wellness fair.
Awards to clubs doing great work in mental health
The R4MH 2018-2019 Award
Dave Gardener, Diana Fields and Bill Farrow presented this year’s Rotarians for Mental Health Award to the Boulder Rotary Club for their work the past two years on mental health community education events at the Jewish Community Center. Accepting the award were Diana Sherry, chair of the club’s Behavioral Wellness committee and Gary Kahn, who put videos of most of the 2018 events onto YouTube. The award included a $750 donation towards their next mental health project.
The Boulder Club co-hosted nine events with a total attendance over 1,500. Feedback from attendees was consistently positive. Boulder Community Health, Mental Health Partners and both the Boulder Club and the Boulder Valley Club were recognized at each event and had display tables.
For 2018 the Rotary Club of Denver Southeast received the first-ever R4MH award for their work on the annual State of the State/Mental Health Symposium events.
The Hayes Family Mental Health Award
The 2019 Hayes Family Mental Health Award goes to the Rotary Club of Summit County for its partnership with a grass-roots mental health initiative called Building Hope Summit County. A new member class of eight led the way, producing brochures providing education on mental health, aiming to reduce the stigma. The award includes $2,000 for future work in the mental health field.
This district award was created by the family of the late Mike Hayes, avid Rotarian and PDG, in his honor. The award recognizes and supports an outstanding new project addressing depression, anxiety and/or addiction.
For 2018 the Rotary Club of Commerce City received the first-ever Hayes Family Mental Health Award. Commerce City's project was Just for Veterans and Their Families: Embracing Needs and Removing Barriers. Their goal for a new project was to deepen connections with the veterans community, teaching Mental Health First Aid and providing other educational activities.