With school starting in a few weeks, mental health issues among students have been increasing throughout the past years, according to Chenango Forks Elementary Social Worker Stephanie Moochler.
At Chenango Forks Elementary, the school is using a platform that is used nationwide called the “Gizmo Therapy Dog” curriculum with students. (Read More)
Gizmo, the narrator of Gizmo’s Pawesome Guide to Mental Health, is a therapy dog. For the past 12 years, he has been comforting people when they are feeling sad, mad, or worried and, through his Pawesome Guide, provides school-aged children with the tools they need to manage their mental health. But Gizmo is aging and in 2023 is preparing to retire with a farewell retirement tour.
We took some time to speak with Gizmo as he reflects on the impact of his work and his upcoming retirement. (Read More)
Anyone looking for a way to start a conversation about suicide, or bring more awareness about mental health, can look to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
The organization has several free programs available, all aimed at starting those conversations. (Read More)
In honor of May being National Mental Health Awareness Month, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) is launching nationwide interactive Read-Along programs based on the children’s book, Gizmo’s Pawesome Guide to Mental Health© in partnership with the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) and the United Way of CT/2-1-1 on behalf of the CT Suicide Advisory Board (CTSAB) to promote positive mental health habits and trusted-adult connections for elementary-aged children. (Read More)
One of those activities to get young people involved is a read-along with a furry friend, Gizmo, designed to help young people with their mental health. Watch the Fox 61 story at https://bit.ly/3uAJ7iy.
In collaboration with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Office of the Surgeon General, the Action Alliance and its partners helped to develop The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Implement the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (Call to Action). The Call to Action identifies six key actions that must be prioritized and implemented now in order to reverse the upward trend of suicide deaths in the U.S.
Did you know there are things you can do every day to take care of your mental health? As Connecticut moves forward together during this challenging time, many people are looking for ways to foster hope and wellness, and to build emotional and mental health resilience in their families and communities. To support this, the United Way of Connecticut, in collaboration with the Connecticut Departments of Mental Health and Addiction Services, Children and Families and State Department of Education, is pleased to announce the release of the “Gizmo’s Pawesome Pledge for Mental Health.” Youth and Trusted Adults can join this effort to promote mental health and emotional wellness by taking the online pledge and making a mental health plan here.
Taking this pledge means that youth will commit to taking care of their mental health every day; talking to their Trusted Adults; completing their mental health plan, and using it when feeling sad, mad or worried. (Read More)
Educators across the world are wondering how school will look when they return to the buildings that they left suddenly earlier this spring.
This toolkit is designed to help guide conversations to include a trauma-informed, equitable, and compassionate lens to providing mental health supports to every member of the school community. Because we will all return to school as different people than when we left, caring leaders are seeking to support each other in turning our tragedies into growth, recognizing the joys amongst the ongoing and profound difficulties, and re-establishing school communities to serve everyone, with greater justice and equity. (read more)
The stress and anxiety
of the COVID-19 outbreak is impacting families in various ways, and these
resources can help you and your family stay safe and calm during this
challenging, and uncertain time.
With schools closing,
it’s also important to consider how you can keep your children who are old
enough to stay home alone safe while you’re working. Please see the articles
below that can help you discuss the COVID-19 outbreak with your children based
on their age, and set rules and limits.
Also, when adjusting
the environment for their increased safety, please don’t forget to secure
alcohol, tobacco, prescription and over-the-counter medication, and firearms.
Even well-behaved children make impulsive decisions based on natural
curiosities that get them into trouble when bored.
CT Suicide Advisory Board
For the latest information about Connecticut, call 211, text CTCOVID to 898211 or visit ct.gov/coronavirus