This Rotary Club has had a long interest in mental health issues as evidenced by collaboration with the suicide prevention efforts spearheaded by our
Sheriff’s Department. We have provided and served meals and snacks for training sessions offered to both school personnel and the general public. Three-hour courses in suicide detection and two-day courses in suicide intervention work to foster a better informed and more competently prepared community response.
Our support of the Y.E.S.S. (Youth Education and Safety in Schools) Program helps combat bullying, sexting and substance abuse, promotes internet safety, and teaches healthy relationships in the school setting. Parent Academies, taught by Y..E.S.S. officers, assist moms and dads in the challenges of present day parenting.
To date, the Rotary Club of Castle Pines has sponsored 60 middle school and high school students for week-long leadership training at Camp Ponderosa in Larkspur and the YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park, respectively. Participants discover personal strengths, learn communication techniques, develop teamwork skills, and enhance self-esteem – with students frequently declaring, “This has changed my life.”
Sponsorship of Interact Clubs at Rock Canyon High School and Rocky Heights Middle School enables students to catch the happy virus of Service Above Self. A byproduct of that has been their activity in the Peaceful Schools Program where older students help 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade students in how to deal with conflict and treat people with respect and dignity.
While youth is our primary concern, our interest in mental health extends to our veterans. Sponsorship of soldiers to the Warrior Bonfire Program assists
those burdened with PTSD. Additionally, financial assistance to Guitars for the Troops provides free acoustic guitar packages to active-duty soldiers serving around the world, wounded warriors recuperating from injuries, and veterans who may be suffering from the invisible wounds of war.
Finally, some degree of improved mental health is certainly a result of the Shelter Boxes we send, granting temporary shelter to disaster victims worldwide.
Challenges to stability are many in our modern world. It is reassuring to know that Rotarians are increasingly aware of the importance of mental health as a major issue and are working in its behalf.