Mental health has continued to be stigmatized and hidden as a shameful secret. And yet, the demands on our mental wellbeing are at an all-time high – from isolation and lack of social support to job loss and mounting debt. Funders are increasingly recognizing the need for organized mental health support for our communities. For funders looking for inspiration, the following is a list of national nonprofits that focus on mental health and wellbeing. Stay tuned for future posts on organizations that serve communities with more specific needs including LGBTQ individuals, youth, and immigrants.
NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. They are an alliance of more than 600 local affiliates who work in local communities to raise awareness and provide support and education that was not previously available to those in need.
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is a voluntary health organization that gives those affected by suicide a nationwide community empowered by research, education and advocacy to take action against this leading cause of death. They fund scientific research, educate the public about mental health and suicide prevention, advocate for public policies in mental health and suicide prevention, and support survivors of suicide loss and those affected by suicide.
The Treatment Advocacy Center is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating barriers to the timely and effective treatment of severe mental illness. The organization promotes laws, policies and practices for the delivery of psychiatric care and supports the development of innovative treatments for and research into the causes of severe and persistent psychiatric illnesses, such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
Mental Health America (MHA) is the nation’s leading community-based nonprofit dedicated to addressing the needs of those living with mental illness and promoting the overall mental health of all. MHA’s work is driven by its commitment to promote mental health as a critical part of overall wellness, including prevention services for all; early identification and intervention for those at risk; integrated care, services, and supports for those who need them; with recovery as the goal. Much of MHA’s work is guided by its Before Stage 4 (B4Stage4) philosophy – that mental health conditions should be treated long before they reach the most critical points in the disease process.
To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA) is a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury, and suicide. TWLOHA exists to encourage, inform, inspire, and also to invest directly into treatment and recovery. Their core beliefs are: You were created to love and be loved, People need other people, Your story is important, Better days are ahead, and Hope and help are real.
Project Sanctuary believes that every military family has the right and ability to heal. Veterans and service members often struggle to transition into a “new normal” after service or deployment. Faced with higher rates of unemployment, addiction, suicide, and other challenges, military families too often fight their battles alone. Their comprehensive evidence-based program is one of the only ones treating the entire family, active-duty service members from all branches of the military, and veterans from all eras of service.
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