What we can do:
1. Educate your communities and congregations. Promote awareness by educating the members of your communities and congregations about mental health issues through educational forums and other opportunities Invite local mental health experts – including those who have experienced mental illness – to speak with your congregation or at community gatherings. Share facts and common myths about mental health. Support the development of a trauma-informed community. Trauma often lies beneath seemingly unrelated problems. Organize additional meetings, dinners, or other gatherings for members of your congregation or community to have conversations about mental health.
2. Identify opportunities to support people with mental illnesses. Religious and other community organizations can play an important role in supporting individuals living with mental illnesses and encouraging them to seek help.
3. Connect individuals and families to help. Strengthen the connections within your community to mental health services and support and enhance linkages between mental health, substance abuse, disability, and other social services.
4. Promote acceptance of those with mental health issues. The voices of leaders and members of faith-based and other community organizations can greatly influence attitudes about mental health conditions and those who experience them.
5. Offer free counseling to the cases that the church may feel like it cannot handle!
6. Offer free counseling to the community and develop resources!
7. Offer Group counseling, Small Groups, Education Groups, and Community Events to help foster a connection and place where people fit in!