Mental Health Crisis… I Matter. You Matter. We Matter.

One in five. That’s the percentage of adults in America who experience a mental illness in a given year. Nearly one in 25 adults in America lives with a serious mental illness. And, even more startling, one-half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of 14.

But, mental illness is only part of the challenge. Getting proper care and treatment is also problematic – and sometimes out of reach.

Just take a look at the Problem Pipeline below, which shows various obstacles that get in the way as people in need seek help for mental health issues. We lose them at each barrier, beginning with stigma. And we end up with only a fraction of people receiving high-quality care. There is little argument that we are facing a mental health crisis in our nation.

Problem Pipeline

The Great Lakes Bay Region Mental Health Partnership is collaborating with many organizations to address these barriers – and get people the help they need, quickly. Numerous groups of regional community stakeholders are tackling the issues, testing potential solutions and implementing successes.

Reach Out!

In the face of this crisis, it is important to remember that You Matter. Your future, your experiences, your ideas – they all matter… Everyone matters!

There are many misconceptions tied to mental illness and we are working to address those now. If someone you care about is experiencing a tough time, reach out to them so they know they matter. If you are personally experiencing a tough time, it is okay to ask for help. Here are two excellent resources:

Call: 1-800-662-HELP (4357)

Text: BELONG to 741741

Both are nationwide resources that the Great Lakes Bay Region Mental Health Partnership has researched to ensure that connecting to assistance is effective and anonymous.

We encourage everyone to become more open about mental health and mental illness. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t be afraid to seek help. Don’t be afraid to help someone else.

Awareness is the first step in confronting the mental health crisis. This is truly a problem that requires our collective attention and sensitive response. Let’s tackle this together, as a community and as a nation. Because, Everyone Matters.

By: Dr. Matt Samocki, Executive Director, GLBR Mental Health Partnership

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