Friday Update 3-7-14

Greetings faithful readers. The first day of spring is a mere 13 days away and we know most of you can't wait. Get your groove on with some "Spring Fever" Elvis style, get inspired and then get to readin' Friday Update! 

Most important reads for this week

Thank you Sesame Workshop!
We are so grateful to Sesame Workshop for providing 600 kits from their emotional well-being series for us to distribute at the 27th Annual Children's Mental Health Research and Policy Conference this past week. Please visit the Sesame Workshop website and show them some Network love. They are amazing partners with terrific resources available to all. Plus, there is no denyin' that Elmo is pretty darned cute...

Enroll for healthcare by March 31 
Molly is 23 years old and she found affordable coverage in the Health Insurance Marketplace. She pays $76 a month for a health plan that includes dental! Dang, if Molly can do it so can you! Enrollment deadline is March 31st. There is flat-out no excuse not to be enrolled for health care coverage. If you care about those you love and those you work with then you need to help them get enrolled. Check out our enrollment page to find a Navigator near you. Couldn't be easier!

Let's put a stop to inappropriate seclusion and restraint 
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, this is one topic that you would do well to educate yourself on. Kids are being traumatized and that is a bottom-line that none of us want, regardless of whether you are a teacher, provider or family member. Quite simply we need you to click on this link and let your representative know your opinion. 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!

Sneak Peek - Children's Mental Health Awareness Week
Oh man, we are so excited about plans for Children's Mental Health Awareness Week but we need to wait one more week to get our ducks in a row. The Children's Mental Health Research and Policy conference dominated our time this past week so we will announce our plans next Friday. It's way cool...

Georgetown hiring Director of Mental Health Policy & Planning 
The National Technical Assistance Center for Children's Mental Health at Georgetown University is recruiting to fill the position of Director of Mental Health Policy and Planning. The Director of Mental Health Policy and Planning holds a faculty position at the Georgetown University Medical Center and will work in Washington, DC. The application deadline is April 1, 2014. Interviews will be held during the months of May and June and plans are to offer the position to a successful candidate by the middle of July. I am feeling some Hoya love on this one - looks like a great opportunity folks!

Georgetown University Training Institutes - so much to choose from! 
Speakin' of Hoya love... Register and make your hotel reservations for the Georgetown University Training Institutes in July. Start your learning experience early and take one of the optional, intensive Pre-Institutes Training Programs on July 15 and 16. Choose from Addressing Disparities: Achieving Equity in Children's Mental Health Care; Strategic Financing for Expanding and Sustaining Children's Mental Health and Substance Abuse Systems of Care; Implementing Systems of Care for Youth with Mental Health Challenges and Their Families: A Curriculum for State and Community Leaders; The Art and Practice of Adaptive Leadership for Systems Change; Building Collaboration: From Me to We; Youth Mental Health First Aid; and Leadership Camp for Directors and Emerging Leaders of Family- and Youth-Run Organizations. I'm exhausted just thinkin' about it all. See you in July!

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. 

International Bipolar Foundation offers 4th annual International High School Essay Contest 
The International Bipolar Foundation has opened the submission portal for the 2014 annual global essay contest to erase stigma associated with mental illness through education. The contest is part of the foundation's mission to address the impact of bipolar disorder and is open to all high school students. The Network featured this contest last year and is pleased to do so again this year. The first place winner will receive $500 and the second place winner will receive $100. I can hear the keyboards hummin' on this one. 

Advanced nutrient therapies for Bipolar Disorders 
Goodness, the International Bipolar Foundation keeps pumpin' out great information and resources. They are at it again with another timely webinar on cutting-edge research on the use of nutrient therapies for bipolar disorder, featuring Dr. William Walsh. Dr. Walsh will focus on how brain-changing imbalances occur in bipolar disorder and how nutrient therapies are increasingly being used in treatment.


Is Friday Update workin' for ya?

A big THANK YOU for reading and participating in Friday Update each and every week. Our promise to you is that we will work to improve and expand our coverage of pertinent issues for children's mental health advocates, families, policy makers and just plain folk who care about making our communities stronger. So in the spirit of innovation and change what would you do to improve Friday Update for 2014? Send us your ideas. We are grateful for any and all feedback especially for ideas of how we can improve upon what we offer you. Not signed up yet to receive Friday Update every week? Sign up now and get the latest information you need to help you improve services for children and families. Forward a copy of this Update to a colleague and be a part of spreading the love about children's mental health far and wide. Just be sure to give us a wee bit of credit, okay? 

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Scott Bryant-Comstock
President & CEO 

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