Friday Update 3-14-14

Greetings faithful readers. With only 17 days left to sign up for health care, how can we not feature the "Between Two Ferns" segment featuring host Zach Galifianakis and President Barak Obama. If you have already watched it (as it has exploded on the internet) you know that it is worth watching again. Regardless of your political leanings, this is a "must watch" video. Watch the video, get inspired, get insured and then get to readin' Friday Update! 

Most important reads for this week

Thank you Characters Unite!
Ah yes, the Children's Mental Health Network is truly blessed to have amazing partners. A big shout out to Characters Unite, USA Network's award-winning public service program which was created to address the social injustices and cultural divides still prevalent in our society. Inspired by USA Network's iconic "Characters Welcome" brand and with the support of leading national nonprofit organizations, the ongoing campaign is dedicated to supporting activities and messaging that combat prejudice and intolerance while promoting understanding and acceptance — on-air, online, and in communities across the country. When we asked them to help us with Children's Mental Health Awareness Week activities (more on that later) they jumped right in and have been amazing supporters of our effort to bring the "I won't stand for" campaign to Network faithful near and far. Please visit the Characters Unite website and show them some Network love. Now that's what we call some serious Network faithful!

Network faithful - weigh in on the Keeping All Student's Safe Act! 
As we announced last month, Senator Tom Harkin has introduced the Keeping All Students Safe Act (KASA), vowing to push forward with this bill "either as a stand-alone piece of legislation or by incorporating it into a bigger bill." The bill puts the contentious issue back on the front burner in Congress after the House passed a similar bill in 2010 and a previous Senate bill stalled. Make no mistake; getting the KASA bill through will be an uphill battle so your continued advocacy on this issue is important. Network faithful are encouraged to send a note of thanks to Senator MurphySenator Hirono, and Senator Baldwin for co-sponsoring this important bill with Senator Harkin. Network faithful in Rhode Island - please contact Sen. Ayotte [R-NH] to see if you can schedule a meeting to discuss the importance of the Keeping All Students Safe Act. Senator Ayotte co-sponsored the bill on February 24th but withdrew her support on February 25th. We need her voice on this one so time to step it up Network faithful! If you need talking points let us know and we will be happy to help. While we think the introduction and passage of this proposed bill should be a no-brainer, much more public support is needed. And that means you! We have made it super easy for you to do so take 5 minutes and let your voice be heard.

An Intro to a Young Adult Consumer Publication 
Here is a must read for Network Faithful. Lauren Grimes offers a thoughtful and provocative look at the importance of honoring young mental health consumer insights and knowledge about the issues most important to them. Brilliant writing and a definite must read. Lauren Grimes is the Transitional Age Youth Outreach Coordinator for On Our Own of Maryland. She has struggled with and overcome numerous behavioral health challenges since she was a young adolescent, and has extensive personal experience with the mental health system, which she freely draws from in her work in the peer world. She is also the winner of the SAMHSA's  2013 Young Adult Voice Award. 

SAMHSA 2015 proposed budget
We just finished savoring all 348 pages of the SAMHSA budget and have some definite ideas of what Network faithful should be paying attention to as the budget process moves forward. We will share our analysis next week. Here's a hint - in this day and age of austerity, thinkin' outside the box is more important than ever. We will show you how as there are definite opportunities available. 

19 days to #getcoverednow 
There are three weeks left to sign up for health care coverage. People shouldn't wait until the last minute. The deadline is March 31, so the time to enroll is now. Note that there are financial tax credits available to help pay for the cost. Nearly 6 in 10 uninsured can find coverage for $100 or less. 

Taking care of my health is no act 
It took Rachel Brown 15 minutes to get covered at HealthCare.gov. Yep, things are definitely improving. Watch her tell her story and then share it with someone you love who is still uninsured. 

20 reasons to get covered 
To mark the 20 final days of open enrollment, here are 20 reasons to get covered. Check them out, then head over to healthcare.gov and sign up!  

Okay, I think we have made the point. Get covered! 

Check out the Mindfulness App! 
Perfect timing to talk about how to get your meditation on (since we have hammered you incessantly with the importance of getting covered). Do you want to find more balance in today's increasingly stressful existence? Do you think that meditation seems difficult? Try the Mindfulness App. - the most popular mindfulness app in Scandinavia! Let's show some Network love and bring it stateside! 

Do you know a Rock Star? 
Youth Motivating Other through Voices of Experience (M.O.V.E.) National has OPENED NOMINATIONS for the 4TH Annual Rock Star Awards! This prestigious award honors individuals and/or organizations who make an outstanding contribution to the improvement of youth, services and systems that support positive growth and development of young people who have lived experience in various child-serving systems including, but not limited to, mental health, juvenile justice, education, and child welfare. Your chance to nominate a Rock Star ends April 11, 2014 so sharpen those pencils and get to writin'. 

Speaking of Rock Stars, have you registered for the Georgetown Training Institutes yet? 
Keep the learning going by registering for the Georgetown University Training Institutes taking place in Washington, DC July 16 – 20 in Washington, DC. Highlights include 30 Institutes, 30 Workshops, 20 Professional Development Seminars, General Sessions with exciting featured speakers, and the RockStar Youth Leadership Track. See you in July! 

Children's Mental Health Awareness Week
Oh man, just a bit more fine tuning of the website before we post our plans for Children's Mental Health Awareness Week in May. We will send out a special announcement on Monday morning. Stay tuned! 

Treatment Drug Court grant deadline just around the corner 
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) is accepting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2014 Grants to Expand Substance Abuse Treatment in Adult Tribal Healing to Wellness Courts and Juvenile Treatment Drug Courts. Okay Network faithful, the table is set. Get on it and add a critical component to meeting the needs of youth with mental health and substance abuse issues. Our judicial system is full enough. Let's promote alternatives, strengthen communities, save money and more important, strengthen the resiliency needed for youth with substance use challenges to become successful adults. This is a great opportunity that will slip away if Network faithful don't generate strong interest. Time to talk with your local judges and community partners and get to writin'. The deadline for proposals is March 17. 

1,065 organizations push for restoration of 302(b) to 2010 level
Network faithful take note and congratulate yourselves for lending your signature to the annual "302(b)" letter organized by Coalition for Health Funding, Committee for Education Funding, and Campaign to Invest in America's Workforce. The support for this effort was overwhelming. 1,065 organizations from across the nation signed on—a new high! 

Text, talk, act to improve mental health 
On April 24th, join Creating Community Solutions in a nationwide discussion on mental health… via your cell phone! All over the country, on the same day, people will get together in small groups for one-hour discussions on mental health. This one looks like fun. Get on it! 

Paycheck to Paycheck: The Life and Times of Katrina Gilbert 
HBO and the most recent Shriver Report, a joint project between Maria Shriver and the Center for American Progress, recently announced the March 17 premiere of their documentary film collaboration, "Paycheck to Paycheck: The Life and Times of Katrina Gilbert." We hope you will consider joining the national conversation on family economic security issues by hosting a film watch party and entering to win a Google Hangout with Maria Shriver! How cool is that? 

Youth M.O.V.E. National newsletter a hit! 
We here at the Children's Mental Health Network are feelin' some cosmic love with the amazing crew at Youth M.O.V.E. National. If you have not had a chance to sign up for their newsletter... well then... what are you waiting for? If you want to stay connected to what is happening with this rapidly growing youth movement then ya better sign up for the newsletter and hang on tight. They have got so much goin' on it makes my head spin... 

Bullying prevention conference April 9-10 
At the request of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and the National Research Council (NRC) will hold a two-day workshop April 9-10, that will feature expert presentations and discussion to highlight current research on bullying prevention as well as lessons learned from related areas of research and practice. 

MY Fest - "MY Mind + MY Body + MY LIFE" March 23, 2014! 
Let's talk about some epic events in recent history. Who can forget the Beatles in Shea Stadium, the Monterey Jazz Festival, and of course, Woodstock (it has been pointed out more than once that I am showing my age with this analogy). Yes, they were epic, but they pale in comparison to MY Fest. Last year, MY Fest drew a crowd of nearly 9,000 people and featured 80 youth and family serving organizations. Head on over to Tempe, Arizona and help MY LIFE make this MY Fest the best one yet! 

2014 Mental Health Services Research Conference 
Registration is open for the 22nd NIMH Conference on Mental Health Services Research (MHSR): Research in Pursuit of a Learning Mental Health Care System, April 23 – 25, 2014. The MHSR Conference is organized biennially by the NIMH's Services Research and Clinical Epidemiology Branch to promote areas of high priority for services research, and identify opportunities with potential for significant impact on the health and well-being of people with mental health challenges. 

SAMHSA issues Advisory to treatment community on the danger of heroin contaminated with fentanyl and what can be done to save lives 
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has issued an advisory to the treatment community about a marked increase in deaths since the beginning of the year that were reportedly linked to the use of heroin contaminated with the drug fentanyl. Important read Network faithful.



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Scott Bryant-Comstock
President & CEO 

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