Supporting the Local Community: Mental Health Advocates of WNY
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and we are excited to announce that Mental Health Advocates of Western New York (MHA Of WNY) will be our featured organization of the month. We will be donating $2 from every order in May to this great local organization.
We spoke with MHA Of WNY Director of Community Outreach, Kelly Miskovski to learn more about its role in the local community. You can also click here to visit the MHA Of WNY website.
B2U: What type of services does Mental Health Advocates of Western New York offer?
MHA Of WNY: Our mission is to promote mental health and wellness in the region and support individuals and families challenged by mental illness. MHA provides pro-bono legal services, peer and child family support groups, emotional skills training, prevention and early intervention programs for students, court appointed help and workplace mental wellbeing programs.
B2U: Who in the community does MHA Of WNY work with?
MHA Of WNY: We serve families and individuals throughout all 8 counties in WNY. If you or a family member is struggling with a mental illness, it can be hard to know where to turn. If you are looking for answers, we can help navigate the mental healthcare system and offer links to treatment and other support services.
B2U: How long has MHA Of WNY been serving the Western New York community?
MHA Of WNY: We have been in business since 1962. Our 60th anniversary is coming up next year!
B2U: What makes MHA Of WNY unique to the Buffalo community?
MHA Of WNY: MHA of WNY is unique in that it provides non-clinical support for individuals, families and youth who are living with mental illness. While other agencies provide much needed counseling and treatment options, we provide essential day-to-day living support, i.e. legal assistance, social skill building, workplace wellness and information and referral. We also focus on mental wellness and wellbeing; how to support each other to develop healthy living and coping strategies. We advocate for families, youth and individuals, and we work to eliminate mental health stigma.
B2U: What are your organizations goals in 2021 and beyond?
MHA Of WNY: MHA of WNY has several goals for 2021. We are raising awareness of the increase in anxiety and depression rates due to COVID. We are working to help our communities understand and work through the collective trauma of COVID. We are supporting our children and young adults who have had to adjust to remote learning and have experienced a lack of services to support their learning. We are advocating for more funding for our youth and family peer advocates to increase their presence in schools, in hospitals and in communities. Ultimately, we want to normalize mental health, decrease stigma and make the world a more compassionate, caring and loving place.
B2U: How can someone inquire about donating to our volunteering for your organization directly?
MHA Of WNY: If you are interested in donating you can donate right on our website at www.mhawny.org. If you are interested in volunteer opportunities, please call our main phone line at 716-886-1242.
B2U: How can someone learn more information about the organization, or contact the organization directly?
MHA Of WNY: We have a brand-new website that gives a detailed overview of all of our programs and services. Our website has a calendar that lists the schedule for our ongoing support groups, events or trainings. There's also a video overview of MHA Of WNY on our home page.
We have an active Facebook page which is a great way to stay up to date with mental health news locally and nationally.
We can be reached by phone from 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM Monday-Friday at (716)886-1242
B2U: Taking a quick poll of everyone in the office, where can you find the best wings in Buffalo?
MHA Of WNY: Gabriel's Gate!!