Voices’ Blog

Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week Wrap-Up

Posted:  -  By: Voices for VA's Kids

Thank you to everyone who participated in making Children’s Mental Health Week an important time in Virginia. Gov. McDonnell issued a proclamation declaring May 9, 2012 to be Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day in Virginia. This proclamation was read by Secretary of Health and Human Resources Dr. Bill Hazel at an event at Henrico Area Mental Health. The Campaign for Children’s Mental Health set up a table, along with other organizations, to share information about treatment and advocacy resources. Speakers at the event included Dr. Hazel, Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services Jim Stewart, Dr. Bela Sood, medical director of the Virginia Treatment Center for Children, and parent and advocate Carol Obrochta. Delegate Dickie Bell, champion of the new funding for children’s mental health just allocated by the General Assembly, attended the event to show his support, as did long-time child mental health advocate Justice Bill Mims.

WCVE’s Craig Carper covered the event, and you can listen to the story here.

Secretary Bill Hazel and Delegate Dickie Bell listen at Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day.

Thursday, May 10, the Campaign and other sponsors brought “Little Black Dress” to the University of Richmond. This play, written by Jennifer Lipford Petticolas, tells the story of Brittney Kittrell, a George Mason University student who ended her life by suicide. A very powerful production including dance and music as well as drama, the play seeks to bring awareness to issues of depression and suicide. A panel presentation with Brittney’s mother, Kim Kittrell, followed the play and included questions from the audience. Other panelists included Campaign Coordinator Margaret Nimmo Crowe, Sgt. J. J. Riana of Henrico Police, Larry Barnett of Chesterfield Community Services Board, Dr. Lynne Foreman of Henrico Mental Health, and Christina Benton, suicide prevention coordinator from the Va Department of Health.

WCVE’s Craig Carper also covered this event, and you can listen to the story here.

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