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October 2020

Share Your COVID-19 Experience

Share Your COVID-19 Experience Community Conversations, New Jersey’s COVID-19 Storytelling Project, is a collaboration between the NJ YMCA State Alliance and NJ Department of Health to gather NJ residents’ accounts of navigating the COVID-19 pandemic: how we’ve struggled, survived, and how New Jersey should – can – improve. By listening to these accounts, we can better support our State’s healing process and form the building blocks of a more resilient, compassionate, and Healthy New Jersey.

Human Services & Children and Families Unveil $25 Million Plan to Support Continued Access to Critical Home and Community-Based Services During the Pandemic

New Jersey is using federal Coronavirus Relief Fund resources to provide up to $25 million to help providers of home health, developmental disability, child welfare, and homeless services remain open and accessible during the pandemic. Human Services and the Department of Children and Families will be reimbursing for the added costs they are incurring due to COVID-19 for essentials such as PPE and enhanced cleaning. Qualifying COVID-related expenditures include: Personal protective...

Indigenous Peoples' Day

Mental health issues affect everyone, but Native American people have higher rates of mental health disorders and face more disparities in getting help than White people. This is due to lack of access to health services resulting from institutional discrimination, interpersonal racism, and cultural stigma — which can harm the psyche of people of color in places where they are not the majority. Native Americans have higher rates of substance abuse and depression (PDF) in comparison to other...

AG Grewal and Education Commissioner Dehmer Announce Statewide “Handle With Care” Program

TRENTON – Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal and Interim Education Commissioner Kevin Dehmer today announced a new Statewide “Handle With Care” Program to support schoolchildren in New Jersey who have experienced traumatic events. “Handle With Care” (HWC) is designed to promote partnerships between law enforcement and schools to provide a safe and supportive academic environment for children exposed to "adverse childhood experiences,” or ACEs. ACEs, if unaddressed, can lead to problems such...

National Depression Screening Day

A June study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that young adults, minorities, and essential workers feel higher levels of anxiety, depression, are increasingly abusing drugs and alcohol, and have suicidal thoughts. For National Depression Screening Day, Mental Health America compiled information on the critical need for depression screenings--during and beyond COVID-19. Read more here.

Mental Illness and Substance Use in Young Adults

It's National Mental Illness Awareness Week. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) compiled materials to navigate conversations about mental health and substance use with adolescents. These include an infographic of the signs of mental illness and substance misuse in adolescents, as well as a guide to begin a conversation and motivate an adolescent to get the help they may need. Read more here.

ACE Impact Team Aligns Efforts to Help Newark Residents Reach Greatest Potential

The ACE Impact Team, with strategies modeled by the Philadelphia ACE Task Force, Camden’s Hopeworks, and the Safe and Supportive Schools Commission in Massachusetts, is exploring ways to connect with youth. Specifically, community coaches are engaging with youth to better understand population health, develop leadership skills, and spearhead strategies to make their communities healthier. Read more here.

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