SAMHSA to Sponsor National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), approximately 11.3% of children in the U.S. between the ages of 8 and 15 suffer from a serious mental illness (2012a). To raise awareness around the many challenges that these young people face and honor the adults and organizations that help them lead healthier lives, SAMHSA will be hosting the National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day this Wednesday, May 9. As part of the Awareness Day, more than 130 organizations are partnering with SAMHSA around the country to facilitate “community events, youth rallies, social media campaigns, and activities with children that promote community conversations about the importance of caring adults to enhancing resilience in children and youth following traumatic experiences” (SAMHSA, 2012b). The day’s events will culminate with an evening program from 7:30-9:30 PM in the Lisner Auditorium at George Washington University, hosted by Leon Harris, anchor for ABC-7/ WJLA-TV. The event at George Washington University will include live performances from youth who have overcome abuse and trauma as well as a presentation from the United States Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

Through its operation of the Technical Assistance Partnership for Child and Family Mental Health for SAMHSA, AIR’s Human and Social Development Program (HSD) works closely with mental health and other child serving systems around the country to strengthen their capacity to care for children with mental illnesses. Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day is one of the major Communications Campaign activities for SAMHSA’s Child Mental Health Initiative Program. The TA Partnership provides training and technical assistance to the 76 system of care communities that will be conducting simultaneous events in their jurisdictions for awareness day. AIR operates the TA Partnership in collaboration with the National Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health under contract from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

References
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2012a). Mental Health, United States, 2010. HHS Publication No. (SMA) 12-4681. Rockville, MD: Author.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2012b). National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day 2012: Heroes of Hope. Retrieved from http://www.awarenessevent.org/

Event Information

May 8, 2012
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM