The Board of Directors meeting schedule:
- February 26, 2013
- April 16, 2013
- May 14, 2013
- June 25, 2013
- September 24, 2013
- October 22, 2013
The Board of Directors meeting schedule:
- September 27, 2011 2:30 PM; Strategic Planning Session to follow at 3:00 PM
- October 25, 2011 5:00 PM
- January 24, 2012 5:00 PM
- April 24, 2012 5:00 PM
- May 22, 2012 5:00 PM
- June 26, 2012 5:00 PM
Creating a mentally-healthy environment for you and your family is easy. Regardless of who or how many members make up your family, there are endless ways to achieve mental wellness while relieving stress and spending time with the people you love. Here’s a quick list of ideas. Feel free to make your own – the key words are fun and easy!
- Eat dinner together – As so many families know, finding time to sit down for a family meal can be a challenge. But doing so once a week or even every other week is a prime opportunity to talk, listen and enjoy a good meal together.
- Get some exercise – We all know exercise can be hard work, but it can also be lots of fun for the family and help you feel great. So get together with loved ones to shoot some hoops, go swimming or play a favorite sport.
- Go to the zoo or a museum – Choose a free day and take a trip to the local zoo or museum to learn and explore. Afterwards, treat yourselves to lunch or a healthy snack.
- Take a Walk – Walking together can be a simple and fun way to get your blood flowing while enjoying the outdoors and the company of family members. Pick a scenic route and get moving.
- Watch a movie – Pick up a good family film, make some popcorn and stay inside for the night.
- Get enough rest – Mental and physical health go hand in hand and you can only be at the top of your game when you’ve gotten plenty of rest. Make sure you and your family members get a full seven to eight hours of sleep each night.
- Pack a healthy lunch – Encourage the healthy eating habits of your family by packing a healthy lunch. Substitute chips and a soda with healthier snacks like carrots, raisins and fresh juice or water.
- Read a book together – Reading a good book can be one of the simple pleasures of life and a great way to exercise your mind. Select something the whole family can enjoy and read a portion of it aloud each night.
- Plan a picnic – Choose a sunny day, pack a nice lunch and head to the park. Bring tennis rackets or a soccer ball and challenge your family members to a game of one-on-one.
- Take a vacation – Getting away home and work for a couple of days or more is always a treat. Plan a fun and affordable getaway where you and your family can rest, relax and escape your busy schedules.
Mental Health America
It is easy for parents to identify a child’s physical needs–nutritious and balanced meals; adequate shelter and clothing; sufficient rest and physical activity; immunizations; and a healthy living environment.
However, a child’s mental and emotional needs may not be as obvious. Good mental health allows children to think clearly, develop socially, learn new skills, build self-esteem, and develop a positive mental outlook.
These are the basics for a child’s good mental health:
- Give children unconditional love. Children need to know that your love does not depend on their accomplishments.
- Nurture children’s confidence and self-esteem. Praise and encourage them. Set realistic goals for them. Be honest about your mistakes. Avoid sarcasm.
- Encourage children to play. Play time is as important to a child’s development as food. Play helps children be creative, develop problem-solving skills and self-control, and learn how to get along with others.
- Enroll children in an after school activity, especially if they are otherwise home alone after school. This is a great way for kids to stay productive, learn something new, gain self-esteem and have something to look forward to during the week. Or check in on children after school if they are home alone. Children need to know that even if you’re not there physically, you’re thinking about them, and interested in how they spent their day and how they’ll spend the rest of it.
- Provide a safe and secure environment. Fear can be very real for a child. Try to find out what is frightening him or her. Be loving, patient and reassuring, not critical.
- Give appropriate guidance and discipline when necessary. Be firm, but kind and realistic with your expectations. The goal is not to control the child, but to help him or her learn self-control.
- Communicate. Make time each day after work and school to listen to your children and talk with them about what is happening in their lives. Share emotions and feelings with your children.
- Get help. If you’re concerned about your child’s mental health, consult with teachers, a guidance counselor or another adult who may have information about his or her behavior. If you think there is a problem, seek professional help. Early identification and treatment can help children with mental health problems reach their full potential.
~ Mental Health America
Today, it is estimated that one in every 110 children is diagnosed with autism, making it more common than childhood cancer, juvenile diabetes, and pediatric AIDS combined. Autism prevents children and adolescents from interacting normally with other people and affects almost every aspect of their social and psychological development. An estimated 1.5 million individuals in the U.S. are diagnosed with Autism. Reference: www.autismspeaks.org.
For more information about Autism check out our resources page.
We are all too familiar with the term stress, but do we understand enough about when stress is too much? Usually we associate stress with particular events or happenings in our life. We know that stress is natural for events such as death, divorce, financial uncertainty and health problems. We “deal with it” and go on, but do we really go on? When fear and uncertainty continue for a long period of time people often experience low level stress. Some research indicates that low level stress can have significant negative physical and psychological effects. You can help yourself, your family, friends and children cope with stress naturally on a daily basis if you are aware that stress is present.
Stress can affect you physically. An individual may experience pain, digestive problems, sleeping problems, low energy, loss of appetite or a tendency to eat more comfort foods, or use more alcohol, drugs or tobacco. Stress can affect you emotionally, for example, someone may feel more sad, angry, guilty, helpless or anxious and worried. These feelings can come and go. Stress also affects the way you think. It may be hard to concentrate, stop thinking about the event or remember day-today- things. Stress can also affect your sense of safety. An individual may find it hard to leave their loved ones or home. Sometimes someone may tend to overprotect their children.
It is important that you take care of yourself. Even if you are not currently experiencing a stressful event in your life, pay attention to how you deal with daily stress. Incorporate healthy habits to manage stress in your life so when you have serious life events that may happen you are more equipped to stay healthy. This quote is a good reminder, “If I’d known I was gonna live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself”, Eubie Blake 100 years old. This is all too often true; you need to change your habits before you have to. Some healthy habits include taking breaks and to do something you enjoy, taking time to relax and exercise, watch what you are eating/nutrition, resting and sleep habits; get a good nights sleep, and most importantly remember to talk with others. Children and adults benefit from honest, open discussion and providing reassurances.
Professional help is also available if you feel that the natural reactions you are having do not subside with healthy coping habits. If you have concerns about your excessive or prolonged stress please contact a local mental health professional or primary care physician to discuss this.
Susan Kornder, CSW-PIP
Northeastern Mental Health Center