SYFS April News: May is Mental Health Awareness Month

Above: SYFS is promoting a series of events to promote Mental Health Awareness in May (image cropped from flyer)

Yesterday, I wrote about how the Town is celebrating April with a series of Planet Palooza events. Today, I’m sharing the Town’s news on a series of special events to celebrate May as Mental Health Awareness Month.

It’s on of the biggest news items in this month’s bulletin from Southborough Youth & Family Services. In keeping with that theme the bulletin also shares the following message about Finding Mental Health Support:

Over the last two years, we have collectively all experienced an increase in chronic stress, disruption, disconnection, and trauma. Frequent changes in the pandemic landscape have exacerbated these issues adding to it confusion, conflict, and insecurity. With all of us experiencing these same issues at the same time, it is no wonder that the mental health field has encountered a tsunami of need. As a result, many are finding it difficult to find mental health support for themselves and/or their loved ones at a critical time.Below we have provided an article and press release from the White House regarding these issues, other factors contributing to the lack of services, and strategies to address the issue. At SYFS we are working hard to try to provide additional resources for residents, strategies to support one another, and providing information on what to look for in the case of psychiatric emergencies. We have provided some information below about workshops that are available to residents free of charge as well as the mental health support services we offer.

You may experience frustration in your search for a provider and this may cause an increase in stress levels. We are here to help and provide interim support. Please do not hesitate to contact us even if it is for a one time conversation.

Events include book and movie discussions, story times, talks, a hike, and more.

Other bulletin items include news on upcoming sessions of SYFS’ training workshops on “Listen with L.O.V.E”. and “QPR Gatekeeper Suicide Prevention”. And it reminds of the Mental Health Support and Therapy Referral Services they provide. Plus, it continues to promote the opportunity to nominate someone for the Laurie Sugarman-Whittier Wellness Award.

But since I’ve covered those in the past, this post will focus on the May theme and planned events.

(For the full bulletin and a video message by Director Sarah Cassell, click here.)

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

The announcement about the annual promotion states:

#Together4MH posterEvery year Southborough Youth and Family Services (SYFS) celebrates Mental Health Awareness Month (MHAM). It’s a time of year that reminds us of the importance of self-care and compassion. It’s also a time for us to connect with each other and support one another as we all have been touched by mental health challenges in some way. This is why the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI) has chosen “Together for Mental Health” as their theme for MHAM 2022, a theme that SYFS will echo this year. SYFS, along with other community partners, has many things planned in May from books, to hikes, to movies, and talks. All are centered around health, wellness, and supporting one another. We hope you will join us!

Special Events

A dozen events are already promoted throughout May in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month. (Stay tuned for more events to pop up in the next month.)

SYFS wrote that registration for events will be made available on its website, but some of them include registration info/links below:

Mental Fitness
Monday, May 2, 7:00 pm

Mental Fitness flyerThis event is part of an ongoing zoom series by Jill Vroman and the Southborough Library. “When we improve our mental fitness, we improve our peak performance, healthy relationships and complete health. Learn how you sabotage yourself daily and how it is possible to correct it.” (Click here for more details and to register)

Southborough Goes Green
Friday, May 6

The community is encouraged to wear green in a show of support.

Shop with a Purpose - Save the Date cardShop with a Purpose
Saturday, May 7, 11:00 am – 4:00 pm

A special shopping event at the Community House to raise funds for the Southborough Summer Camp Scholarship program. (For details, including the list of vendors, see dedicated post.)

Community Hike
Sunday, May 15, 1:00 pm

Stay tuned for details (including location) of a hike sponsored by the Trails Committee.

Preschool Story Time with Miss Kim
Monday, May 16 and Tuesday, May 17, 10:30 am

The books and and crafts for this week’s theme of the preschool story time will be consistent with Mental Health Awareness Month. The events take place in the Southborough Library’s Children’s Room. No registration is required.

Lunch break: Parents Group
Wednesday, May 18, 12:00 pm

Parents are invited to this zoom session “Helping your kids with their stress by managing your own.”

Southborough Rotary Club
Wednesday, May 18, 7:00 pm

This meeting of the Rotary Club will feature an SYFS speaker

Baby & Toddler Story Time with Miss Kim
Thursday, May 19, 11:00 am

This story time with puppets, stories, and music is for children age 0-2 years and their parents or caregivers. This session’s selections will be consistent with Mental Health Awareness Month. The event takes place in the Southborough Library’s Children’s Room. No registration is required.

Braving the Wilderness Community Read flyerCommunity Read Discussion
Thursday, May 19, 7:00 pm

A group discussion over zoom of the Community Read selection “Braving the Wilderness. Cosponsored by the Southborough Library

Community Watch: Resilience
Saturday, May 21, 12:00 – 1:00 pm

Mental Health Awareness Saturday Films flyerThe Southborough Library will be screening the documentary Resilience: the Biology of Stress & the Science of Hope.

Community Watch: Paper Tigers
Saturday, May 21, 1:30 – 3:00 pm

The Southborough Library will be screening the documentary Paper Tigers: One High School’s Unlikely Success Story. A short discussion of the film will follow the screening.

Both Community Watch programs are sponsored by the Library with funding made possible through the Library Services & Technology Act distributed by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners

Trauma Free Communities
Tuesday, May 24, 7:00 pm

Movie Discussion Group over zoom. Stay tuned for more details.

Updated (4/28/22 8:37 am): Friends of SYC shared more details on the Shop with a Purpose event. You can find those here.

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