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Highlights Local

"Navigating The Course To Mental Health: How Consumers Can Be Captains Of Their Recovery" Conference Great Success

Aug 26 2016 Erie, PA

65 attendees at this conference learned about tools and programs that put mental health consumers in charge of their recovery and be able to assist themselves and others to find hope and meaning in their futures. During the morning session they learned about a self-directed care program operated by the Mental Health Association of Southeastern Pa. that promotes the consumer to be in charge of developing a recovery plan wherein they can direct funds for traditional and non-traditional services and purchases that fit with their goals. In the afternoon, conference participants learned about identifying and addressing suicidal thoughts and behaviors and the nature and use of Wellness Recovery Action Plans and Psychiatric Advance Directives in taking charge of their recovery.

Thanks to the Mental Health Association in Pennsylvania for sponsoring this free event and to the Zem Zem Banquet and Conference Center for their professionalism and hospitality.

Boots On Ground at MHA Gets over $2,000 From Erie Gives Day Donations

Aug 15 2016 Erie, PA

Once again a generous Erie community helped literally hundreds of nonprofits on Erie Gives Day August 9th. Boots On Ground was this year’s MHA program we selected to be the beneficiary of Erie Gives Day donations. Thanks Erie for donating over $2,000 in support of peer based support for our veterans and their families working to recover from PTSD and depression. Boots On Ground (BOG) is relatively new to Erie and the MHA so it is very gratifying that so many of our fellow Erieites are learning about BOG and its life saving message of hope and recovery for those vets among us who are struggling with return to civilian status.

A quick guide to some housing resources
for people experiencing homelessness

Warming Center at MHA

The Warming Center at MHA opens its doors whenever the overnight temperature will be 25 degrees or less, accepting anyone who needs to come in from the cold during overnight hours. All are welcome while they abide by basic rules of mutual respect. MHA provides shelter, safety, food, coffee, activities, conversation, support, and a place to "nap" for those needing to rest. Click on Icon just above this column.

Erie County Care Management Homeless Case Management

Best to call early in the morning or late afternoon or most likely you will need to leave a message and number for them to call back. They can meet with you at their office or somewhere in the community. Homeless Case Management can be a good resource way to help someone with a mental health need find a place to live. Homeless case managers have expertise and resources others may not have. The case managers are in the emergency shelters almost every day.

United Methodist Alliance Project Hope

Project Hope has very active outreach workers. They can meet with you in the community. Project Hope workers often can meet with people in the evenings as well as the daytime. Project Hope has resources others may not.

Over-flow shelter information

The over-flow shelter location rotates through the community. Call to find the location and times it is open.

Highlights Regional

The Sweethearts Deal: How To Keep Your Relationship Healthy

Aug 15 2016 Erie, PA

This article from BP (Bipolar) Magazine deals with building strong relationships when one partner has bipolar disorder.

Complete Article ~

Lady Gaga and Her Triumph Over Depression and Loneliness

Aug 15 2016 Erie, PA

This article from Esperanza (Anxiety&Depression) Magazine features the journey of super-star Lady Gaga to wellness.

Complete Article ~

Spirituality & Mental Health Recovery Conference

"Spiritual Hope & Healing", the 14th annual Spirituality and Mental Health Recovery Conference has been scheduled for Sep 7 2016.

Free to family members and mental health consumers. $30 for all others
Tue Sep 7 2016
9:30AM to 4:15PM
Zem Zem Conference Center
2525 W 38th St, Erie, PA
Aug 31 2016

This presentation is open to mental health consumers, families and professionals. CEUs are available, flyer has details.

Registration and Information ~

Meadville Recovery Celebration on Sep 23, 2016

Join the Voices For Recovery in Diamond Park on Sep 23 2016 between 11:00AM and 3:00PM. The Crawford County Drug and Alcohol Executive Commission has organized this annual event at a part of National Recovery Month.

Event Flyer ~

National Recovery Month Sept 2016

Prevention works, treatment is effective, people can and do recover from mental and substance use disorders.

"Join the Voices for Recovery: Our Families, Our Stories, Our Recovery!" is the theme for this year.

Post the save the dates to your calendar.
Save the Date ~
Completed table registrations are due Aug 31, 2016.
Table Registration form ~

2016 Pennsylvania Disability Employment & Empowerment Summit

Oct 17 to Oct 18 2016
Bayfront Convention Center, Erie, PA
Web Site
More Info
Detail Information

MHA Participates in Neighborhood Safety Initiative

May 27 2016, Erie PA

MHA is joining with other neighborhood nonprofits, businesses and the Erie Police to confront the growing problem of drug related activity and stigmatizing behaviors in our part of the downtown area. The advent of cheap but dangerous drugs, the faltering Erie economy and the concentration of vulnerable persons in our immediate vicinity has led to serious concerns for safety of businesses, citizenry, and the people we serve. The newly formed committee is looking at ways to dramatically improve neighborhood safety for the benefit of all. After only 3 meetings, interest and membership in the committee is growing and action has already begun. For us at MHA our greatest concern has been the victimization of members by drug dealers. MHA and our neighbors have now posted "No Loitering" signs and MHA is actively patrolling the perimeter of our building to enforce the postings. Police are stepping up their presence in the area as well and members are reporting suspicious activity. Through our efforts and those of our neighbors we are already seeing benefits and our members are reporting feeling more safe. The initiative is just beginning but MHA is pleased to be a part of making our neighborhood into one of the safest in the downtown area.

Consumers Sought Out to Work on Campaigns

May 28 2016, Erie PA

Thanks to outreach by Diana Ames, MHA's Community Engagement Coordinator, an increasing number of candidates for public office are contacting us for volunteers to assist in their campaigns. We are pleased to say that this includes opportunities from both major political parties.

MHA cannot and does not support any particular candidate for any office but we can offer the opportunity for consumer members to take an active role in campaigns on behalf of candidates they may favor. This represents a great way for consumers to become more aware of how our democracy works and about important policy issues that can impact their lives. Dozens of consumers have taken advantage of these opportunities and have become active in promoting voter registration and action amongst fellow consumers. MHA is pleased and proud that our members and mental health consumers in general, are developing a voting block.

Penn State: Workplace Experiences of Employees with Depression

May 12 2016 College Park, PA

Penn State invites you to participate in a study about the work experiences of employees with depression. This study aims to understand the work experiences of employees with depression. It involves a one-hour phone interview in which participants will be asked structured interview questions. Qualified participants will be given a $25 Target gift as compensation for their participation in the study.

To sign-up for the study, participants can register using this link: Introduction Survey by Aug 31, 2016.

Any questions about the study can be directed to Kayla Weaver at or 309-531-5175.

Boots On Ground Moves To Palace Building

Due to some mechanical problems at the Boots On Ground office space donated at the Renaissance Center site, Tom Kennedy and Altair have helped BOG locate an even better office space in the their Palace Centre Building. Despite having to make such a sudden move, BOG is very excited about this new space which seems ideally suited for the program. BOG Director, Venus Azevedo-Laboda, and her crew of volunteers have established themselves in the site and are very pleased. MHA and BOG are very appreciative of the help Mr. Kennedy and Altair have provided in making this transition which, like the Renaissance Center, is rent and utility free for a year so that BOG can concentrate on development of funding and programming.

The new address for BOG is:

  • Boots On Ground
  • Palace Centre
  • 913 State St., Suite 220-230
  • Erie, PA 16501
  • (814)878-2934

Shop Amazon Smile And Support Boots On Ground

Do you shop on Amazon? Now you can support Boots On Ground (BOG), the new MHA program supporting our veterans and families coping with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. With every purchase you make on Amazon Smile, .5% of the sale will be donated by Amazon to MHA for this veteran peer based program. Click on the Amazon Smile post above and happy shopping.

For more information on Boots On Ground, click on the BOG logo on the left side of this home page. Our veterans with invisible wounds need us so they can help each other.

4 Used, Working Laptop Computer Donations Make A Difference, But More Needed

Thanks to the donors of four good used laptop computers for Second Chance Computers. This is enough to hold a small class for some lucky mental health consumers who will learn basic proficiency of use and then be able to take home the laptop on which they trained. Second Chance Computers is helping transform the lives of consumers on the wrong side of the digital divide. They are learning how to produce resumes, access the internet, use open source software and generally become a part of 21st century communication. Gaining these skills have helped them be more confident and engaged and has led to employment opportunities.

We still need more laptops . . . a lot! We have many names of individuals meeting basic criteria for Second Chance Computer classes but we are constantly having to wait for individuals, businesses and organizations to part with their outdated laptops that are gathering dust. Please give your used but working laptops a second life with a consumer who can become empowered by your donation. Call LuAnn at 452-4462 ext. 126 with any questions you may have about donating laptops.

Community Care, Erie County, Meeting Schedule

Community Care, a nonprofit managed care organization, announces the schedule for the upcomming advisory meetings.

Meetings for Community Care Adult Members:
Adult Members Meetings ~

Meetings for Families of Members:
Family Meetings ~

Western Region CSP
Schedule for 2016

The Community Support Program (CSP) of Pennsylvania is a coalition of mental health consumers, family members and professionals working to help adults with serious mental illnesses and co-occurring disorders live successfully in the community.

Meeting Information ~

MHANP routinely attends these meetings and all members are encouraged to participate. The exact time and date is listed monthly in our Schedule of Activities.

Schedule of Activities ~