Over 200 attend Community Mental Health Forum

It’s Time to Talk about it- Community Mental Health Forum

On October 17 , 2017 over 200 people attended the Community Mental Health Forum at Grand Casino Hinckley. Attendees were able to meet with over 20 community providers and hear from Mental Health professionals and personal stories.

Kelly Sam the Director of Strategic Relations from Grand Casino was the Emcee. A prayer was given by Joe Nayquonabe Sr., Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe- Spiritual Elder, Becky Foss, Director of Pine County Health and Human Services got the program started with a warm welcome, and Congressman Rick Nolan provided a brief statement of support and the importance of legislative surrounding mental health issues.

Along with a free dinner and resources, there were various speakers throughout the evening.

Recovery in Behavioral Health

Josh Seez with the St. Cloud VAHCS spoke about Recovery in Behavioral Health. There are 4 major dimensions that support a life in recovery- Hope, Health, Community and Purpose. Josh also spoke about Recovery oriented language- Recovery-oriented language helps promote acceptance and respect for individuals with mental health conditions. It fosters the belief that recovery is possible for everyone.

For more information about the Mental Health programs and recovery approaches with the St. Cloud VAHCS contact- 320-255- 6322 or 866-687- 7382 or https://www.stcloud.va.gov/services/mentalhealth.asp. Veterans Crisis Line: 800-273- 8255

Personal Stories

We heard several very emotional yet encouraging personal stories. Both from individuals who live with PTSD. One related to first responder work and the other as a result of military experience. We also heard from a family caregiver. The speakers expressed the value of having supportive family and friends when experience a mental health crisis.

Children’s Mental Health

Lisa Tollefson, Mental Health Professional from Therapeutic Services Agency spoke about Children’s Mental Health. She explained that even the youngest of infants could be diagnosed with a Mental Illness. Showing that these innocent children can be affected by their parent’s choices, physical and mental health pre-birth. For more information contact Therapeutic Services Agency info@tsapc.net. or website: http://www.hoperealized.com.

Corporate Initiatives

Briana Michels, Risk Specialist- Grand Casino Hinckley- spoke about the Creative Bridge Group they have started at the Casino as result of several mental health episodes experienced at the Casino. The group offers trainings such as QPR, MH first aide to employees and community. For
questions about the Bridge Group and how to get an employee initiative started contact Briana Michels, Risk Specialist, Direct line: 320-384- 4765, email: bmichels@grcasinos.com    

Regional Initiatives

Natalie Matthewson, R7E Adult Mental Health Initiative Planner discussed the history of the initiative and current services that are funded with AMHI grant funds. She also spoke about the role of the planner working with the region. For more information, contact Natalie at 320-266- 4253 or

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

Sue Abderholden, Director of NAMI Minnesota spoke of where we have come from where we are now and what still needs to be done. Sue highlighted important topics for the 2018 Legislative Session; Funding for early childhood, childcare; Funding for crisis services; Community college mental health; School-linked mental health; Parity enforcement; Prior authorization/step therapy; Solitary confinement in prison; Jail mental health. In addition, at the Federal level repeal of ACA, changes to Medicaid, High-risk pool, repeal of Medicaid expansion/limits. For more information, contact NAMI Minnesota at 1-888- NAMI-HELPS or www.namihelps.org.

Joe Nayquonabe Sr.

Joe Nayquonabe Sr. closed the evening with his own personal story of PTSD and the importance of the
Band, City and County providers working together to help our communities.

For Mental Wellness HELP in East Central Minnesota

In a life threatening situation or medical emergency, call your doctor or 911.

CRISIS phone line:
Call 800 523-3333 or text the word “MN” to 741741

Just need to talk to someone?
Wellness in the Woods 5:pm – 9:am Daily 844-739-6369
Minnesota NAMI Warmline 4:pm – 8:pm Thur – Sun 888-334-7754
Mental Health Advocacy Minnesota Warmline 5:pm-10:pm Mon – Sat 877-404-3190

Click here for additional information

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