GE Donates $3,000 to Mental Health America of Roanoke Valley; Supports Suicide Prevention Programs
- Company’s Contribution Helps Educate Community About Teen and Veteran Suicide Prevention
- Addresses Critical Issue of Increasing and Improving Access to Mental Health Care
- Continues GE’s Legacy of Giving Back to the Communities Where its Employees Live and Work
ROANOKE, Va. — July 15, 2015 — GE (NYSE: GE) is donating $3,000 to Mental Health America of Roanoke Valley (MHARV) to support educational programs focused on teen and veteran suicide prevention.
The charitable contribution is being made on behalf of its 750 employees located at the company’s Salem facility, where industrial controls are designed and manufactured. A cross-functional group including leadership, engineers and production employees from the plant selected the organization for the donation.
“GE is working around the world to increase and improve access to mental health care,” said Craig Strong, plant manager of GE’s Salem facility. “We know that diagnosing and treating mental illnesses is a challenge for health facilities, especially in rural areas. GE’s donation to MHARV will not only help to improve access to mental health care in the Roanoke Valley community but also improve overall well-being and quality of life for these patients and their families.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is the third leading cause of death for youths between 10 and 24, resulting in approximately 4,600 lives lost each year. In addition, a recent analysis 1 concluded that the annual suicide rate among veterans is about 30 for every 100,000 of the population, compared with the civilian rate of 14 per 100,000.
MHARV is planning a series of educational programs to address these issues in the Roanoke Valley community. For the fall, the organization is coordinating a breakfast presentation to teach child-serving professionals (school personnel, pediatricians, social services, clergy, etc.) about teen suicide prevention. The event will take place on Thursday, September 17. MHARV also is planning similar seminars for the local veteran population.
“The support of partners like GE makes it possible for us to reach out to the community and reduce the stigma attached to mental illnesses,” said Diane Kelly, executive director of MHARV. “It empowers us to help people who struggle with mental illness and improve access to treatment resources.”
In addition, GE’s donation will help MHARV educate the community about cultural diversity and the importance of understanding how different cultures perceive mental illness, the stigmas attached to it and how treatment is delivered.
MHARV’s programming efforts are focused in four areas: mental health advocacy; mental health education; Roanoke Valley Mental Health Care Collaborative, a free clinic operated by MHARV; and programs for children and families. In 2014, among many other accomplishments, MHARV trained 190 individuals on mental health first aid and provided about 100 mental health assessments, 500 counseling sessions and 540 psychiatry/medication-management sessions for 210 indigent, uninsured adults.
In April, GE contributed $3,500 to the Virginia Museum of Transportation to support its educational outreach efforts and develop future exhibits. In early May, GE donated $4,000 to the Salvation Army’s Turning Point program — the area’s largest secure shelter for domestic violence victims and their children. The donation will help Turning Point significantly improve the living quarters for their residents and offset the cost of food. Last month, GE donated $3,000 to Roanoke Area Ministries to help the organization achieve its mission of providing safe shelter, nutritious lunches and emergency financial aid to the homeless and poverty-stricken.
About Mental Health America of Roanoke Valley
Founded in 1947 by local citizens, Mental Health America of Roanoke Valley (MHARV) is the community’s oldest nonprofit mental health organization. For almost seventy years, MHARV has educated people about mental health and mental illness and connected them with community resources for mental health treatment and support. MHARV continues to work for America’s mental health and for victory over illnesses in the Roanoke Valley community. Through advocacy, education and community services, MHARV reduces the stigma surrounding mental illness; increases public knowledge of mental health issues; offers resources for children and families; and provides access to quality mental health treatment.
1 Source: News21
GE (NYSE: GE) imagines things others don’t, builds things others can’t and delivers outcomes that make the world work better. GE brings together the physical and digital worlds in ways no other company can. In its labs and factories and on the ground with customers, GE is inventing the next industrial era to move, power, build and cure the world. www.ge.com
For more information, contact:
Mental Health America of Roanoke Valley
+1 540 344 0931
+1 860 747 7626 (office)
+1 860 709 2341 (mobile)