Raising Awareness About Mental Health

Kandice RileyMental Health

mental health statistic

Similar to physical health, our mental health must be taken care of at every stage of life. Although crucial to our overall health, mental health is often not discussed due to the stigma that surrounds it. This month, United Way of the Ozarks is focusing on mental health and how it directly impacts our community. 

Lack of awareness often prevents individuals from seeking treatment. This may cause isolation and worsen their conditions. Although some are more vulnerable than others, everyone faces challenges that could impact their mental health. Talking about mental health can help. By making it part of the conversation and acceptable, those suffering from mental illnesses are more likely to seek help, learn to cope and get on the road to recovery. 

United Way of the Ozarks is helping lead the fight for mental health in our community. By partnering with the Ozarks Counseling Center, NAMI of SW Mo and CPO, we are investing in the health of our community.  


When you donate to United Way of the Ozarks, your support directly addresses our community’s most pressing issues. Every gift makes a difference, especially as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.


Stigma can be powerful enough to prevent people from seeking support and care. Learn how you can increase community understanding of mental health and encourage people to get the support and treatment they need.  

  •  Pledge to be StigmaFree with NAMI SW Mo as the first step to helping us stop the stigma against mental health. With your help, we can stop stigma from being a barrier against people seeking help and speaking out. The StigmaFree campaign is NAMI’s effort to end stigma and create hope for those affected by mental illness. 
  • Educate yourself through the Mental Health Moments library of video resources provided by CPO Mental Health First Aid. This video series is intended to give a greater understanding of mental health issues, how to care for their mental health, risk factors and treatments for common mental health issues, and how to support mental health difficulties in those they love.


Join us in destigmatizing mental health. Learn how you can be a voice and support those who need your help.

Woman sitting in chair

Andrea Bishop, executive director of the Betty and Bobby Allison Ozarks Counseling Center, notes everyone can support mental health efforts by checking in with others, listening, being supportive and encouraging those suffering to seek professional help.

Sponsor events by the Ozarks Counseling Center 

Connect with the Ozarks Counseling Center to help make a real difference to those in need. You or your business can support the Ozarks Counseling Center by sponsoring their events or fundraisers. Every donation helps make up their budget, so they can continue to serve the Ozarks and provide mental services to individuals regardless of their ability to pay. 

Contact: [email protected] or call 417-869-9011

In-person or virtual opportunities are available. 

Participate in NamiWalks

Participate in NAMI SWMO’s mental health awareness and fundraising events. Walk together to raise money and awareness for free NAMI programs and services for those in need. Through NAMIWalks, we are changing our communities and ensuring that help and hope are available for those in need.

Contact: [email protected] or call 417-864-7119

In-person or virtual opportunities are available.

Samantha Sherman being interviewd

Samantha Sherman, Community Partnership of the Ozarks, leads the Mental Health First Aid program.

Attend CPO Mental Health First Aid or trauma awareness training

Get free mental health trained to assist the youth or adults in the Ozarks. Mental Health First Aid Training was identified as a valuable resource and necessary tool to be used to offer early intervention and prevention of crisis. Mental Health First Aid and Youth Mental Health First Aid can provide solid knowledge, empathy and interventions that connect people suffering from mental illness or substance abuse to helpful resources.

Contact: [email protected] or call 417-888-2020 

In-person or virtual opportunities are available.

Time commitment: 8-hour training course. 

Join a firearm suicide prevention planning team

Want to learn how to recognize the signs and symptoms of suicide and become a trusted adult for youth? Volunteer to be involved with one of CPO’s firearm suicide prevention planning teams in Greene, Christian, Taney, Newton or Howell counties. 

Contact: [email protected] or call 417-888-2020 

In-person or virtual opportunities are available.

Support the LGBTQ+ Community 

PFLAG Springfield offers support groups and financial assistance for mental health services for LGBTQ+ individuals and their family members. 

Contact: [email protected]

In-person or virtual opportunities are available.

Time Commitment: Meetings held virtually from 3-5 p.m. the third Sunday of the month.  


Thank you for choosing to LIVE UNITED to help every person in our community thrive!