HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital Breese invites the community to a free educational program on Wed., June 14 at 5:00 p.m. in the hospital cafeteria. The Social Services department will host the event for the general public to promote mental health awareness and education with a focus on healthy living, resources, support and identification of someone in crisis.
“Mental health issues are on the rise, even in our county,” says hospital Social Services Director Barbara Berndsen, LSW. She continues, “I think we all know someone who abuses alcohol or another substance. This can be the result of an untreated mental health condition. We all know people going through hard times… medical, financial or relationship difficulties can be emotionally devastating. We see those dealing with grief, families who are working through an illness or a death, and those faced with the helplessness of a loved one’s suicide. We want to reach out, to let people know there is help. We do have resources in place in our area, yet because of the unfortunate stigma associated with this type of illness, many are not aware of them.”
A representative from the National Alliance of Mental Illness (NAMI) will be presenting. According to the NAMI website, “We all experience emotional ups and downs from time to time caused by events in our lives. Mental health conditions go beyond these emotional reactions and become something longer lasting. They are medical conditions that cause changes in how we think and feel and in our mood. They are not the result of personal weakness, lack of character or poor upbringing.”
The website goes on to say, “With proper treatment, people can realize their full potential, cope with the stresses of life, work productively and meaningfully contribute to the world.”
“Consider attending this event to better understand the topic of mental health for yourself, a family member or friend, your customers or your patients,” advises Deacon Linus Klostermann, chaplain with Pastoral Care at St. Joseph’s Hospital. “There will be something for everyone to take away, and you never know when it may help you or your loved one.”
For more information or to register to attend, please leave your contact information and the names of those in your party with Ruth at (618) 526-1421 (or ruth.zurliene@hshs.org) by end of business on June 8. For additional information on NAMI, please go to their website at www.nami.org or access the NAMI helpline at 800-950-6264 (NAMI) Monday through Friday, between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 5 p.m. To find help in a crisis, text ‘nami’ to 741741.

Media Contact

Ashley Gramann

HSHS Illinois
Office: 618-651-2588 or x12588

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