News & Event
Continuing with our strategic focus on adolescent mental health services, the foundation recently funded a number of local school systems to address the mental health needs of their students.
King Philip Regional School District received a grant of $70,000 to replicate the evidence-based BRYT Program at King Philip Regional High School. BRYT stands for the Brookline Resilient Youth Team, a unique program started at Brookline High School that provides support for students returning to school from a hospitalization due to a behavioral health issue. The BRYT Program provides clinical coordination between students, families and school personnel during a crisis and the re-entry process. With the King Philip grant, the foundation has now supported replication of the BRYT program in seven area school systems.
A new grant to the Mendon-Upton Regional School District is allowing school personnel to be trained in Dialectic Behavioral Therapy or DBT. Staff can use DBT skills, such as mindfulness and distress tolerance, to teach students how to manage specific challenges and events, making it easier for them to remain in the classroom. The foundation funded a similar program within the Millis Public Schools that demonstrated a significant decrease in student counseling referrals for self-harming behaviors.
The foundation is also excited about a new three-year grant we recently made to Wellesley College that will be developing and evaluating a comprehensive program to address youth depression and suicide ideation. The three-year grant will enable researchers at Wellesley to conduct universal telephone depression screening of Natick High School students and make appropriate referrals for prevention and treatment. The program will also refer students to a unique web-based resource that can help students strengthen protective factors and reduce their vulnerability to depressive disorders. For the Natick Public Schools, this project fits within their strategic goal of improving academic achievement by incorporating best practices that address wellness and reduce student stress.
Read more about our work to address adolescent mental health in the initiative section of our website.
Framingham, MA – The MetroWest Health Foundation presented its 2018 Deborah Blumer Community Health Leadership Award to the Needham Board of Health and Natick’s Director of Public Health, James White, Jr.
The Needham Board of Health was chosen for its decision in 2005 to set the minimum age for tobacco purchases in the town at age 21. As the first public health agency in the country to go to Tobacco 21, Needham set a standard that is now being replicated in cities and states across the country thereby reducing teen tobacco use rates.
James (Jim) White, Jr. is being honored for his leadership in launching the MetroWest Tobacco Control Program - a nine-town consortium that has helped align tobacco regulations and control measures across multiple jurisdictions. Through Jim's work, the MetroWest area leads the state in communities adopting 21 as the minimum purchase age for tobacco products.
The Deborah Blumer Community Health Leadership Award is named for the late State Representative Deborah Blumer, who served as the founding chairwoman of the foundation’s board of trustees.
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