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Connect: July 2018

Mental illness knows no racial or ethnic boundaries. It can affect anyone. In fact, you may know of an individual struggling today. That struggle is even harder if you are from a minority community.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA):

  1. Over 70 percent of Black/African American adolescents with a major depressive episode did not receive treatment for their condition.
  2. Almost 25 percent of adolescents with a major depressive episode in the last year were Hispanic/Latino.
  3. Asian American adults were less likely to use mental health services than any other racial/ethnic groups.
  4. In the past year, nearly 1 in 10 American Indian or Alaska Native young adults had serious thoughts of suicide.
  5. In the past year, 1 in 7 Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander adults had a diagnosable mental illness.


Furthermore, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) reports that racial and ethnic minority groups in the U.S. are less likely to have access to mental health services, less likely to use community mental health services, more likely to use emergency departments, and more likely to receive lower quality care. Poor mental health care access and quality contribute to poor mental health outcomes, including suicide, among racial and ethnic minority populations.

Why are minority communities less likely to seek care for their mental health?

The reasons are varied and range from poverty to social stigma to a lack of culturally specific care. Something as simple as lack of transportation can be a major barrier for individuals in these populations as well.

Did you know Journey Mental Health Center offers culturally specific care for the African American, Latinx, and the Hmong communities through our Ujima,Clinica Latina, and Kajsiab House Programs. We can help! To access these services, please call 608-280-2720.

Forty-nine-year-old Roben R., a Madison resident, suffered from a lifetime of post-traumatic stress disorder, borderline personality disorder, and severe depression that led to homelessness, drugs, alcohol and petty crimes.

With the help of two Journey Mental Health Center programs. Bayside Care Center and Recovery House, Roben says she is “retiring from that life.”

“I’ve been going to counseling for 20 years, but it wasn’t helping. I was on medications, but I was still doing drugs and alcohol. I would only use one piece of therapy and it didn’t work,” she says. “I led a pretty rough life but eventually I got tired of my life in the streets. I simply decided it wasn’t the life for me.”

Robin kick started her therapy five years ago, but only after being hospitalized for increased symptomology when she learned of her mother’s passing.

Journey’s Bayside Care Center helped Roben get back on track after her release from Meriter’s psychiatric unit.

“I was at Bayside for two weeks. They helped me back to reality and helped me establish goals and made me feel like a person. They got me on the right meds. They have a nice staff.”

Roben is especially grateful to Journey’s Recovery House and says it’s the best thing about Journey.

“Recovery House is a safe place to be. When I walk through the doors I’m treated with respect. People listen and problem solve with me. I know that whatever I need I will accomplish because people at Recovery House care,” Roben says.

In her spare time, Roben enjoys cooking, baking and making jewelry. She is also into action movies: “I like Stallone and DeNiro movies,” she says.

Josh Peterson started working at Journey Mental Health Center in September 2004 as a student intern and case manager. He worked his way up through the managerial ranks, and today is Journey’s director of community-based services. Learn how Journey helps individuals with serious mental illness live in the community – and in the process how Journey is changing the face of the community.

Community Support Programs (CSPs) at Journey operate using the Assertive Community Treatment Model, or ACT, to help individuals with serious mental illness live in the community. In a nutshell, what is the ACT model?

ACT started as a way to provide hospital level services in the community. At the time ACT was designed case management in the community consisted primarily of a brokering type service. A case manager would meet with the consumer, help them get connected to a prescriber, therapist, and a primary care doctor. It was largely up to the consumer to follow-up with the services. Despite very good discharge planning, some consumers suffering from extreme disorganization and symptom interference due to serious mental illness simply did not have the capacity to engage these services independently and would be readmitted to a hospital or institution.

Today, ACT puts a team of case managers, nurses, prescriber, housing and financial supportsin the community to work hand-in-hand with the consumer on a dailybasis – even multiple times daily – to make sure services were engaged and the consumer did not need to return to the hospital. 

Not many people know about Journey’s Community Support Programs, or CSPs. Tell us about them.

Sure. Journey operates four CSPs including Community Treatment Alternatives(CTA), Forward Solutions CSPGateway CSP and Columbia County CSP. Each of these programs has a designated focus within the same CSP framework.

CTA is a jail diversion program for individuals needing CSP level services and who are either facing a potential jail sentence or being released from jail with the expectation of CSP services.

Forward Solutions CSP has a larger number of older consumers and consumers on Partnership and Family Care.

Gateway CSP treats deaf consumers and recently became Journey’s primary CSP for commercial insurance referrals.

Columbia County CSP is based in rural Portage.

How is Journey a life changing and community changing organization?

It’s simple. Journey CSPs play a significant role in the recovery of our consumers. This changes the face of our community in three ways: Higher employment for people living with serious mental illness, reduced hospitalization stays and homelessness, and more independence.

Nationally, employment rates for people with serious mental illness range from 10-15 percent. The employment rate across Journey’s CSPs is significantly higher and ranges from 20 percent to 45 percent of people under the age of 65.

Journey CSPs also have reduced hospitalization daysby nearly 90 percent from the year prior to CSP admission compared to the year after admission.

Journey CSP consumers are able to live independently at a rate of 75-80 percent. This all means more consumers are staying out of the hospital longer, living independently, and finding gainful employment in our community.

Switching gears, Journey’s Yahara House operates on the clubhouse model. What is a clubhouse?

The clubhouse is an environment where staff and members living with serious mental illness work side-by-side to complete the daily operations of the house, and they do so in a manner in which staff and members are nearly indistinguishable. Members are involved in nearly all decisions made around the operations of the house, in consensus-based house meetings and day to day discussions.

The Clubhouse Model is not primarily focused on “treatment” of mental health issues; it is more focused on giving members a place to be involved in decisions and work, and a place to develop friendships. Really, it’s a place to belong.

With that said, Yahara House branches out into mental health services not typically seen in other clubhouses, such as CCS service facilitation, medication prescribing, and nursing services. Yahara House is seen as a national clubhouseleader in services, member benefits and advocacy.

Yahara House also works with members to obtain employment via the Yahara House Transitional Employment Program (TEP). Nearly 50 percent of Yahara House members were employed over the past year at 50 local business. This is remarkable, when compared to the 20 percent national employment rate for individuals with serious mental illness.

What other community-based services does Journey provide in Dane County?

Journey runs a new targeted case management program, Keystone Community Services, or KCS, and the Opening Avenues to Re-entry Success, or OARS, out of our 2000 Fordem Avenue location.

KCS provides intensive case management services to individuals in need of regular home visits, transportation services, and medication deliveries. They are able to independently function where they don’t meet the level of need for an ACT model of treatment.

OARS provide a similar level of case management services as does KCS, specifically for individuals re-entering the community from jail or prison. OARS case managers meet with the individual while they are incarcerated and set up needed treatment components prior to the individual’s release.

‘It’s imperative that we all work together to drive positive outcomes’

Richelle Anhalt has a longstanding interest in the intersection between the criminal justice system and individuals living with mental illness and substance use challenges.

The 26 ½ year veteran captain of the Dane County Sheriff’s Office joined the Journey Mental Health Center board on May 24, 2018 and wants to be part of a movement, she says, that looks to leverage resources with funding streams that will continue to bring about effective mental health and substance use services to those in need, because the need for services is great.

“I don’t believe there is a simple fix or that any one discipline is the answer,” Richelle says. “It’s imperative that we all work together to drive positive outcomes.”

As a new board member, Richelle want to fully understand Journey’s mission, so she can begin educating others, increasing Journey’s name recognition, and helping decrease the stigma around mental illness and substance use disorders.

“I am excited to bring my perspective, knowledge, energy and expertise to the board. Thank you for the opportunity,” she says.

Up Close: Richelle Anhalt      

Occupation: Captain, Dane County Sheriff’s Dept.

Family: Richelle is married to Pat Anhalt, Chief of Police in Sun Prairie. The couple will be celebrating their 21st wedding anniversary in August. They have two children, Hanna (18) and JP (15), and two golden retrievers, Gunner and Finn.

Residence: Sun Prairie

Connect: June 2018

 

Journey staff members, consumers and volunteers are being featured in a brand new “This is my Journey” social media campaign. This follows the May launch of our $250,000 yearlong billboard campaign, donated by Adams Collaborate. Learn more about Journey and the life- and community-changing work we do on Facebook and Twitter!

Watch nbc15 news coverage of the campaign here.

Janine K. once wrote a letter to country music superstar Chris Stapleton after being moved by his 2016 hit song, “Fire Away,” a song written to bring awareness to mental health issues.

After all, the 56-year-old mother and grandmother had an uncle who lived with mental illness and two cousins who died by suicide.

Janine herself was institutionalized at Wyalusing Academy in Prairie du Chien from age 14 through 17. She was diagnosed with schizophrenia in her 20s.

As an adult, Janine worked as a CNA until her 40s, but had to quit working after experiencing increased symptomology.

“I heard voices and thought people were talking about me. The voices told me to commit suicide,” she says. “I didn’t want to do it, but the voices were telling me to do it, so I took a bunch of pills at a motel.”

Thankfully, Janine survived. She ended up at Journey’s Yahara House. She was referred to Journey’s Bayside Care Center, a hospital diversion program, and Recovery House, a Journey step-down home for people who recently experienced a crisis.

“Bayside staff kept me from killing myself,” Janine says.

Today, she works five days a week at Union Hair Parlor and answers phones at Yahara House. Yahara House is a clubhouse that offers friendships and a work ordered day for individuals living with serious mental illness. She credits Dr. Fred Coleman, a psychiatrist at Yahara House, for helping her find the right medication at the right dosage level.

“Janine knows everyone at Yahara House, and is considered our House Mother,’ says Clubhouse Manager Nicole Harp. “She keeps track of what is going on here, and makes it a point to know where everyone is. She is well loved.”

While Janine’s letter to Stapleton didn’t generate a response from the singer, she is hopeful he saw it.

“It’s important he knows we are listening,” she says.

Tanya Lettman-Shue, Journey’s Chief Clinical Officer, left, thanks Dick Klass for his generous donation of an automobile made on June 20, 2018.

The Dick Klaas family recently donated a 2012 Ford Fusion to Journey in memory of their son and brother Bob, a Journey CTA and Gateway consumer.

“The Klaas family is grateful for the excellent support given to Bob during his life from the Journey family, especially the team at CTA,” Dick said.

The car will be used by staff to help consumers with important appointments and other life tasks. It will also be used for administrative purposes.

What are your responsibilities as CFO?

As Chief Financial Officer, I’m responsible for ensuring Journey meets our financial goals, and that we are around for the next 70 years to help the consumers who have the greatest needs with the fewest resources.

How does the Finance/Accounting team support Journey’s mission and drive impact?

I’m grateful that I have a great team of accountants that work with me. My team and I spend a lot of time working on program budgets, applying for new grants, helping managers make good financial decisions in their programs, and taking care of paying the bills to keep the doors open.

What are some of Journey’s most urgent needs?

Journey recently implemented a new electronic healthcare system. It was a big undertaking, and something we desperately needed. However, we still have a lot of other software upgrades that we need to complete. Some of our most urgent needs are providing the infrastructure necessary that our clinicians can focus on providing care, rather than how to get their notes done, or dealing with software problems.

What are some steps Journey is taking to reach our financial goals?

Journey has spent a lot of time recently trying to elevate our profile in the community. We are focusing our 70th anniversary on raising awareness for Journey and mental health issues. As we do that, we are also focusing on contracting with more insurance providers to diversify our payer base. We are also looking for people passionate about the causes we care about that can support us through philanthropy.

What will it take for Journey to thrive?

The things it will take for Journey to thrive are the same things that got us through our first 70 years. Strong community partnerships, whether that is with County administrators, insurance providers, donors, or other human service agencies, are going to be the key to providing the right care to the right consumers when they need it.

Where do you see Journey in five or 10 years? 

I hope that in five to 10 years Journey is continuing to do everything they are doing today, just for more people in more locations. There is much unmet need in other Counties, and I hope that Journey can be in a place where we can be providing our great specialty care in a lot of other places besides Dane County.

Connect: May 2018

Journey Mental Health Center is kicking off our advocacy and mental illness stigma busting efforts this May during Mental Health Month. It’s the start of a five-month campaign that includes TV, newspaper, and social media stories, bolstered with a year-long billboard campaign courtesy of the Adams Collaborate Program.
A cadre of volunteers, led by “This is my Journey” campaign chair Pooja Mehta, will be working with 22 Journey programs and consumers to tell their unique stories of hope, resiliency, and recovery through a multi-media blitz, including Journey’s Facebook and Twitter pages, TV news stories and newspaper articles.

The campaign is designed to:

–Decrease stigma of mental illness by putting a face and name to the issue,
–Increase Journey’s name recognition
–Establish advocacy efforts for people living with mental illness and addiction, and
–Recognize Journey for the community asset that it is.

It’s a large undertaking, that’s for sure.

 

Peter Rossmeissl

Pooja, an honors  graduate of Duke University, formed the university’s first-ever NAMI student chapter. She is detailed, energetic, enthusiastic, and shines at keeping people on task.

Pooja also lives with, but manages well, her severe anxiety.

“I’m proud of how far I’ve come, and how far I’ll be going,” she says.

Others participating in the billboard campaign include Peter Rossmeissl, a peer support specialist with Journey’s PROPs Program; Jenny King, a peer support specialist in the Journey to Health and Wellness Program;  Joe Mannchen, a transportation  specialist in Journey’s Clinic-Based Services; and Marty Croak, a Journey board member.

Special thanks the Adams Collaborate creative team, including Evan Schultz, art director; Brook Weiland, graphic designer, and Tianna Vanderei, account representative; as well as Marcia Hansen, Marcia Hansen Photographic Company, for serving as the campaign photographer.

Week by Week: ‘This is my Journey’ 

Jenny King

–May 7: Kickoff “Mental Health Awareness Month”
–May 14: Bayside Care Center/Recovery House
–May 21: Journey to Health and Wellness
–May 28: Mental Health First Aid
–June 4: Medication Assisted Therapy

–June 11: Crisis Mobilization / Crisis Stabilization
–June 18: Clinical Assessment Unit
–June 25: PROPs
–July 9: Ujima Program
–July 16: Kajsiab House

Joe Mannchen

–July 23: Clinica Latina
–July 30: Columbia County Community Services
–Aug. 6: Gateway Community Support Program
–Aug. 13: Forward Solutions Community Support Program
–Aug. 20: Alternative Sanctions Program and Drug Court
–Aug. 27: Community Treatment Alternatives / Keystone / OARS

–Sept: 3 and Sept. 10: 24/7 Crisis Hotline
–Sept.17: Cognitive Behavioral Intervention for Trauma in Schools (CBITS)
–Sept. 24: Family Based Services / Family Preservation Program
–Oct. 1: Yahara House
–Oct. 8: Clinic-Based Services / GROW

Marty Croak

At age 14 Kristen started battling her diagnosis of depression. By her 20s, she was re-diagnosed with bi-polar II with anxiety. Today, she lives through physical health problems – fibromyalgia– that affect her mental state.

Yet this fall, Kristen will be pursuing a dual master’s degree in art therapy and counseling from Adler University in Chicago.

The 37-year-old has been on a long and winding road in her journey to recovery.

“The medications I was taking affected me mentally in ways I wouldn’t imagine. I started hallucinating and that’s when things went downhill,” Kristen says. “I couldn’t work so I had to move home. It was horrifying. I hit rock bottom and started hurting myself.”

Without insurance, she couldn’t get medications but eventually found her way to Journey’s Bayside Care Center, where she stayed for two weeks.

“The first couple of days were super scary. I was emotionally unstable and experienced auditory hallucinations that were negative,” Kristen says. “I was a walking zombie, shuffling my feet because of all the medication I was on. I resisted staff help, but after 48 hours I was able to go outside. I started meeting and talking to people and participating in activities during the day. Staff helped me complete my disability paperwork for fibromyalgia.”

Today, Kristen is a caregiver for the elderly, and goes to the UW Pain Management Clinic to help her with her chronic pain.

She calls Saima Chauhan, a Journey therapist, her biggest cheerleader.

“Saima has been a godsend,” Kristen says. “I tend to work well with people who are straightforward. Saima is both sympathetic and nurturing, yet she is a straight shooter. She reminds me of how far I’ve come.”

Kristen is acutely aware of the stigma of living with mental illness. “I lost friends after I attempted suicide,” she says. “Some people used the fact that I am bi-polar II against me. I’ve lost relationships over my illness. The amount of stigma we face is incredible. I want to tell the world that you don’t need to be scared of me. I’m not going to harm you. My diagnosis doesn’t define me.”

Journey Mental Health Center Emergency Services Unit is an integral part of Journey’s continuum of care in the mental health community. Connect sat down with Hannah to learn more about it.

Connect:  Let’s talk about two specific Journey programs in Journey’s Emergency Services Unit – Bayside Care Center and Recovery House. Tell us about them.

Hannah: Sure. Journey’s Bayside Care Center is for individuals experiencing an immediate mental health crisis. It’s a non-restrictive facility, meaning people may come and go. We screen clients to determine their level of acuity. Bayside offers 12 beds and serves as a hospital diversion program for individuals not at risk of harming themselves or others. It’s a cost effective for insurers and governmental agencies when compared to the cost of a stay in an inpatient unit at a hospital.

Journey’s Recovery House serves as a step-down facility for individuals who recently experienced a mental health crisis, but do not need the same level of care afforded by Journey’s Bayside Care Center. Recovery House is a community-based residential facility with space for six residents at a time.

Connect: Why are Journey’s Bayside Care Center and Recovery House so important to the community?

Hannah: Journey’s Bayside Care Center and Journey’s Recovery House are integral pieces in the recovery journey for people in Dane County recovering from a mental health crisis. These programs allow individuals to get mental health services and develop recovery plans in a setting that is not as restrictive as a hospital inpatient unit.

Connect: Let’s switch topics. Journey operates the area’s 24/7 Crisis Hotline. Are your crisis workers on the phone busy?

Hannah: Sadly, we’re very busy. The 24/7 Crisis Hotline gets between 3,500 and 3,700 incoming calls per month, or 120 calls a day. Not only do we take in-bound calls, but we also provide follow-up to individuals who call our number … to check on them and make sure they are OK. We are here to listen and to help.

Connect: What should a family member, friend or co-worker do in the event someone exhibits signs of needing help?

Hannah:  One of the most important things for concerned friends/family to do, is to take the signs seriously. Talk with the individual about their concerns, and the troubling signs that they are seeing. Provide the individual the contact information for  Journey’s 24/7 Crisis Line. That number is 608-280-2600, and if needed, sit with them while they call us for support. Be willing to talk to the crisis staff about what your concerns are for the individual.

Ron Luskin wants people to have access to critically important mental health services, regardless of their ability to pay or cultural background, and it’s one of the reasons he joined the Journey board.

“Everyone needs a chance in life to succeed and reach their full potential. Those in need must be assured of access to mental health service for themselves or their children,” Ron says.

Stability and good mental health, he says, are key to a life focused on the pursuit of happiness. “Because of Journey, children are finding self-confidence to succeed in school and achieve their full potential. Adults want nothing more than to have success in their career and provide for their family.”

Ron was attracted to Journey because of its dedicated and passionate staff. As a new board member, he sees the organization being challenged to continue providing high quality mental health counseling with diminishing governmental funding sources.

He offers a unique skill set to the Journey board. His is great at strategic planning, marketing, communications, donor development and fundraising. Prior to joining the board, Ron helped organize and promote Journey’s Cultural Competency Skills Workshop in October 2017.

“I can help best by offering guidance in increasing awareness of Journey in the community and providing assistance in resource and donor development efforts,” he says.

Ron Luskin At A Glance
Joined board: November 2017
Journey committees: Executive Committee, Governance Committee, and Advocacy and Resource Development Committee.
Other volunteer affiliations: Downtown Madison Inc., Porchlight, Capitol Lakes Foundation, Beacon Homeless Day Resource Center Advisory Team, and Overture Center Advisory Board.
Personal: Ron resides in Downtown Madison. His hobbies include Badger sports and community affairs.

Marcia Hansen found Journey Mental Health Center, just in the nick of time.

“About 4 years ago, I was literally dropped off on the front steps of Journey. This was my last chance to find life again. Journey cares. Journey advocates for those who struggle, feel lost, or like I was just wanting to give up,” she says.

Today, Marcia serves as a Journey’s consumer representative on our board of directors.

“I have a lot of experience as a consumer in the world of mental illness,” Marcia says. “I can present a long history of significantly poor treatment, long lasting painful memories and being treated at times like I was just another disposable person.

Marcia is impressed with Journey.

“Staff members at Journey change people’s lives. They probably don’t even realize that the impact of their car and how it  filters down and spreads into the lives of the consumer’s family and friends. I appreciate the unique opportunity to serve on this board as a consumer.   I would also like to tell people’s stories through my photography.

Journey Mental Health has given me hope, and the possibility of passing that hope forward, would be life-changing,” she says.

Marcia Hansen At A Glance
Joined board: April 2018
Journey committees: Diversity and Inclusion Committee
Personal: Marcia is a certified peer support specialist and a professional commercial photographer. She served as a photographer for Journey’s 2017 Annual Report and for Journey’s public awareness campaign, “This is my Journey.” Her business, Marcia Hansen Photographic Company, can be found online at marciahansenphoto.com.

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