Rita Wheeler, Program Development/Volunteer Coordinator at MHA, accepted the Outstanding Field Instructor Award for Years of Outstanding Service at the Gannon University Social Work Program appreciation lunch.
Dr. Sara Lichtenwalter, LSW comments:" In the almost 11 years I've been at Gannon and have been serving as the Field Coordinator, there has been only one year that we have not had a student working under Rita and Bill at the MHA. Frequently, we have had more than one student, as we do this year. There is a long history of serving as a field placement for my predecessor, Chuck Murphy.
Rita, we would like to acknowledge you as the day-today-hands on field instructor who has for every year accepted and guided Gannon students in their professional development for over 20 years. The outstanding field experiences you consistently and creatively provide are tailored to the unique in abilities and interests of our students. Therefore, every students field experience at MHA has been unique.Thank you, Ms. Wheeler for service to the Gannon Social Work Program and our students."
Receiving this award during National Volunteer Week gave it a special meaning. This awards signifies that an organization outside of the mental health system recognizes that the MHA walks the road of recovery with others.
Bill Grove, CEO of MHA, accepted the Award for Outstanding Agency for Field Placement from Dr. Lori Lindley, Associate Dean CHESS and Dr. Sara Lichtenwalter LSW, Associate Professor, Social Work Program at Gannon University.
The Gannon university Social Work Program hosted an appreciation lunch for their interns and field instructors on Tuesday, April 12, 2016. Dr. Sara Lichtenwalter LSW comments:"Under your leadership, Bill, the MHA has strived and thrived in the service of individuals and families impacted by mental illnesses. Without an exceptional organizational, the MHA, we would not have the venue for Rita or the vibrant placements available to dozens of students over the years. The Gannon Social Work Program wanted to acknowledge the valuable resource, this community treasure, which you captain and pilot through changing economical, political, social conditions and budget cuts, as well as through new and exciting opportunities.
This (award) is to honor the MHA in recognition and appreciation for service to the Gannon Social Work Program and our students."
MHA will be participating again this year in the Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community on June 4th at Presque Isle State Park and we hope you will join us. As usual we will be walking to raise funds for the Warming Center at MHA and we are planning to raise $5,000 at this event. Registration and donation are easy.
Then just show up at Beach 1 and enjoy the music, healthy snacks and a nice weekend walk (either 1 or 3 miles) through our beautiful state park. We look forward to seeing you there and please be generous so we can get to our goal.
Here are some prizes Highmark plans to give away on June 4th:
If you have any questions contact LuAnn at 452-4462 x126.
Our Annual Report for 2014 - 2015 has been made available.
The Warming Center at MHA opens its doors whenever the overnight temperature will be 25 degrees or less, accepting anyone who needs to come in from the cold during overnight hours. All are welcome while they abide by basic rules of mutual respect. MHA provides shelter, safety, food, coffee, activities, conversation, support, and a place to "nap" for those needing to rest. Click on Icon just above this column.
Best to call early in the morning or late afternoon or most likely you will need to leave a message and number for them to call back. They can meet with you at their office or somewhere in the community. Homeless Case Management can be a good resource way to help someone with a mental health need find a place to live. Homeless case managers have expertise and resources others may not have. The case managers are in the emergency shelters almost every day.
Project Hope has very active outreach workers. They can meet with you in the community. Project Hope workers often can meet with people in the evenings as well as the daytime. Project Hope has resources others may not.
The over-flow shelter location rotates through the community. Call to find the location and times it is open.
Save the dates: May 10th and May 23rd, 2016. On each day from 9:00AM to Noon, health services will be available at the Upper Room. Blood pressure checks, blood sugar checks, STD screenings and counseling referrals are available at no cost. Thanks go out to Eagle Scout Alan Green, who organized this project.
Due to some mechanical problems at the Boots On Ground office space donated at the Renaissance Center site, Tom Kennedy and Altair have helped BOG locate an even better office space in the their Palace Centre Building. Despite having to make such a sudden move, BOG is very excited about this new space which seems ideally suited for the program. BOG Director, Venus Azevedo-Laboda, and her crew of volunteers have established themselves in the site and are very pleased. MHA and BOG are very appreciative of the help Mr. Kennedy and Altair have provided in making this transition which, like the Renaissance Center, is rent and utility free for a year so that BOG can concentrate on development of funding and programming.
The new address for BOG is:
The sixth annual Erie County "I'm The Evidence"(ITE) awards will be presented on May 11, 2016. Do you know an Erie County mental health consumer who you believe is a great example of having overcome his/her mental health issues to pursue recovery and living a meaningful life of her/his choosing? Please consider nominating that person for this award.
Do you shop on Amazon? Now you can support Boots On Ground (BOG), the new MHA program supporting our veterans and families coping with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. With every purchase you make on Amazon Smile, .5% of the sale will be donated by Amazon to MHA for this veteran peer based program. Click on the Amazon Smile post above and happy shopping.
For more information on Boots On Ground, click on the BOG logo on the left side of this home page. Our veterans with invisible wounds need us so they can help each other.
The Upper Room webpage on the MHA website is closing down. The Upper Room has now developed its own independent site at www.upperroomerie.com. MHA is pleased to have been able to host the Upper Room page over the past few years but, now that they have grown and it is financially feasible for them to have their own site, we want to congratulate them on its successful launch.
Thanks to the donors of four good used laptop computers for Second Chance Computers. This is enough to hold a small class for some lucky mental health consumers who will learn basic proficiency of use and then be able to take home the laptop on which they trained. Second Chance Computers is helping transform the lives of consumers on the wrong side of the digital divide. They are learning how to produce resumes, access the internet, use open source software and generally become a part of 21st century communication. Gaining these skills have helped them be more confident and engaged and has led to employment opportunities.
We still need more laptops . . . a lot! We have many names of individuals meeting basic criteria for Second Chance Computer classes but we are constantly having to wait for individuals, businesses and organizations to part with their outdated laptops that are gathering dust. Please give your used but working laptops a second life with a consumer who can become empowered by your donation. Call LuAnn at 452-4462 ext. 126 with any questions you may have about donating laptops.
Community Care, a nonprofit managed care organization, announces the schedule for the upcomming advisory meetings.
Meetings for Community Care Adult Members:
~ Adult Members Meetings ~
Meetings for Families of Members:
~ Family Meetings ~
The Community Support Program (CSP) of Pennsylvania is a coalition of mental health consumers, family members and professionals working to help adults with serious mental illnesses and co-occurring disorders live successfully in the community.
MHANP routinely attends these meetings and all members are encouraged to participate. The exact time and date is listed monthly in our Schedule of Activities.