For decades, the Children’s Mental Health Initiative has worked to change the way that mental health services and supports are provided around the country. Through the development of systems of care, children and families benefit from a coordinated network of people who care for them, wrapping them in services and supports based in their community.
One of the key elements in the success of systems of care is social marketing. Vanguard Communications, along with our partners on the Caring for Every Child’s Mental Health Campaign, has helped grantees of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) understand and use social marketing to raise awareness of mental health needs and services, increase support for the systems of care approach and reduce stigma around children’s mental health.
Each May, we come together in spirit with system of care communities at National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day. Year-round, we help system of care grantees engage members of their communities who can contribute to the systems change they are seeking.
This week we have the opportunity to work directly with system of care communities at the University of Maryland, Baltimore Training Institutes (July 25–28), which will convene leaders in systems of care for children, youth and young adults with behavioral health challenges and their families. Along with our Campaign partners at the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD), the Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health, and Youth M.O.V.E. National, we will be providing hands-on training, one-on-one consultation and celebrating social marketing victories big and small during an affinity group meeting.
The overall theme of the conference is “Leading Change” and the Campaign’s workshops will focus on the power of social marketing as a tool for social change and systems change. We are not only excited to interact with communities from across the country, but to be working with them as co-faculty during our training sessions.
As part of the Training Institutes, the Campaign is thrilled to be working with Cherokee Nation’s HERO Project on a training that will cover special considerations for social marketing in tribal communities, as well as working with young adult leaders to teach the power of personal stories as a way to change attitudes, beliefs and behaviors.
The Campaign will be hosting two 3-hour workshops: Social Marketing for Systems Change (with Lummi System of Care Expansion, the Texas System of Care and Mississippi Crossover XPand) and Persuasive Storytelling (with Paving the Way from Fort Worth, Texas).
If you’re joining us at the Training Institutes, we hope to see you there. If you’re not attending, you can follow along and join the conversation on social media using hashtag #LeadingChange.