GUW works to raise awareness of the community’s mental healthcare needs as it continues to campaign for $1.6 million to help build the first behavioral health program designed for young people.
The Greenwich United Way (GUW) and First Selectman Fred Camillo held a proclamation ceremony on Tuesday declaring May as Mental Health Awareness Month in Greenwich. The event coincides with the GUW’s ongoing campaign to help launch a new Adolescent Behavioral Health Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) in partnership with Greenwich Hospital.
Both GUW and Greenwich Hospital are fundraising to create the community’s first behavioral health program designed for young people ages 12 to 18. The GUW has raised more than $1 million as part of its goal of $1.6 million to help fund the construction of the facility. The new facility will be located at 500 W. Putnam Avenue, co-located with Greenwich Hospital’s Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital Pediatric Specialty Center.
“The biggest problem I’ve seen is lack of access to mental health care. We can do more as a community and make ourselves available to our youth and their families,” said Amir Garakani, MD, Chair of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health at Greenwich Hospital. “I want to thank the Greenwich United Way for partnering with us to make this change. It is a big undertaking, but with our community’s support we can do it.”
“We are here to not only raise awareness of the mental health crisis impacting adolescents, but to also erase the stigma associated with it,” said David Rabin, CEO of GUW. “Everyone is affected in some way by mental health issues and the challenges are only increasing. Our new program with Greenwich Hospital will truly be a life saver. Nothing like this exists in Greenwich today and we are proud to lead the charge.”
“It is great to see two of Greenwich’s most established and well-respected organizations come together to help meet the mental health needs of our town,” said Camillo. “More support is needed to make this program launch. For information you can always contact the Greenwich United Way.”
The GUW’s most recent needs assessment research found mental health care and counseling as the service area with the largest gap between need and adequate provisions. Since then, the organization has intensified its commitment to enabling accessible and affordable mental health care for all who need it.
In addition to fundraising for the facility, GUW is working to raise additional capital to provide subsidized access for the IOP program, ensuring that no one is turned away due to costs, co-pays or lack of insurance.
To support the build-out and operation of the Adolescent Behavioral Health Intensive Outpatient Program or learn more about the program, call 203-869-2221.