HONOLULU —Kaiser Permanente has awarded $60,000 in community benefit grant funding to Mental Health America of Hawaii, the organization announced today. The grant will support the Youth Suicide and Bullying Prevention Program, which offers a variety of support services in and out of the classroom for at-risk youth.
The program promotes and advocates for mental health policies and family support, which are shown to reduce adverse childhood experiences stemming from the effects of sexual and domestic abuse, substance abuse and incarceration. Adverse childhood experiences have been linked to depression, sleep disturbances, a cycle of substance abuse and an increase in suicide attempts.
The grant will enable MHAH to provide two-day trainer certification YSBP trainings every two months, with the goal of training at least 5,000 youth every year. MHAH hopes to maintain 100 certified YSBP trainers by offering training sessions and continuing education in the form of conference calls, webinars and one-on-one support.
“Mental, behavioral and emotional health are critical to the well-being and healthy development of young children, yet Hawaii suffers from a shortage of mental health professionals,” said Dave Underriner, president of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals, Hawaii Region. “By partnering with Mental Health America of Hawaii, we hope to help address the need for greater mental health support, especially among children and adolescents.”
In 2017, a separate Kaiser Permanente grant helped fund training and programming for YSBP, which impacted 2,800 students and adults. This year’s grant is expected to benefit more than 5,000 youth throughout the state.
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