In February The Community Foundation launched a Listening Tour to give me the opportunity to hear from you about the needs of our community and how the Foundation can help. The next public meeting is April 22 and you can register here to share your thoughts.
We’re halfway through the tour and one recurring theme has continued to be top of mind for our friends and neighbors: mental health. Over the last year, we’ve heard from nonprofit partners that mental health was a growing concern. Now we’re hearing the same from you. We’re all worried about our loved ones. The isolation and change we’ve all experienced over the past year impacts our entire community in big and small ways. Many in our community share the hope that everyone will have access to mental health support when needed. The Foundation board and staff share this sentiment.
The pandemic has worsened already widespread mental health needs in our community. We know the increased demand will continue as we recover.
Because of the foresight of like-minded donors in Hancock County, funds from the Community Mental Health Fund have been an important resource during this time and will continue to be in the future. A $5,000 grant in 2019 supported the creation of HancockHelps.org. This website is a source for information on several basic needs like housing, food security and more in addition to mental health. It has also become a hub for coronavirus resources. I encourage you to visit the site if you haven’t already to familiarize yourself with what is available and share it with loved ones who may need support.
A Field of Interest Fund like the Community Mental Health Fund distributes a portion each year through an application process to organizations doing work in that field. And it can do even more with your support. Mental health is a broad topic and this is one way you can give to ensure friends, family and neighbors have access to the care they need. Your support of the Community Mental Health Fund directly benefits improving the mental health of Hancock County. Click here to learn more.
This editorial was originally printed in The Courier Monday, March 22, 2021.