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Accomplishment Spotlight: VISTA Member at American Legion Auxiliary Encourages Action for Military Children for Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day June 5, 2012

Posted by servicecorpsnews in Accomplishment Spotlight.
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May 9 was designated Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). ALA Call to Service Corps VISTA Member Laura Baim, assigned to American Legion Auxiliary National Headquarters, encouraged local Auxiliary units utilize the day to bring awareness to the mental health needs of military children.

Laura prepared bulletins and newsletters to get the word out about what ALA chapters could do to participate in this day. Laura made best use of materials that a Call to Service Corps VISTA member serving ALA in 2009-2010, Nicole Knisley, had prepared to promote this annual observance. Laura used the prior materials to create her announcements. Laura also distributed the tool kit to ALA chapters.

ALA encouraged collaborations with Give an Hour, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and the American Art Therapy Association. If a unit or department was holding an event, it was encouraged that these organizations be invited to join it to build even more support for military children’s mental health needs. An explicit collaboration with the American Art Therapy Association was established for local units in order for them to get in contact with a local art therapist to ask for their assistance at events where an art project was going to be conducted. One idea for an art project was to depict whom the child’s hero was and write an explanation of why they chose that hero.

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