A Healthier Wisconsin

Supporting Mental Health Friendly Washington & Ozaukee Counties

Informing a mental health friendly communities model in Washington and Ozaukee Counties

Full Project Name:Supporting Mental Health Friendly Washington & Ozaukee CountiesPrimary Community Organization:Washington Ozaukee Public Health DepartmentAward Amount:$10,000
Award Date
Project Duration:6 months

Project Description Narrative:

Despite multiple community health improvement efforts, assessment data continued to show that mental health and wellness is a priority area to address in Washington and Ozaukee Counties. As a result, the counties' two long-standing mental health-focused coalitions decided to join forces to shift from efforts based on short-term outcomes to working collaboratively toward creating mental health friendly communities. In order to reach this goal, partners recognized the need to first explore the current mental health landscape to gain a better understanding of where the needs, referral system, and successes currently exist. This project aimed to conduct a gap analysis to determine existing mental health service gaps in Washington and Ozaukee Counties to inform the development and implementation of a mental health friendly communities model.

Project partners:
Well Washington Think Well (Washington County) and INVEST Coalition (Ozaukee County) partners: Advocates of Ozaukee, Albrecht Free Clinic, Ascension, Casa Guadalupe, COPE crisis hotline, Fire and Police Departments, Friends of Abused Families, Froedtert Health and Human Services, IMPACT 211, LiFE OF HOPE, NAMI, Ozaukee County School Districts, Ozaukee Family Services, Probation and Parole, Rawhide, Southeastern and Ozaukee County Tobacco Free Coalition, United Way of Washington County, UW-Milwaukee College of Nursing, Washington County School Districts, Supported by the Washington Ozaukee Public Health Department staff

Outcomes & Lessons Learned:

• Developed a gap analysis report synthesizing information collected from community interviews and focus groups into eight recommendations to guide implementation of the mental health friendly communities model

• Created a mental health resource guide in response to needs identified through the community input process to help community agencies and residents be more aware of existing resources across the two counties

• Engaged new partners to join the coalitions following participation in the community input process

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