United Way of Denton County Board Approves Grant for Mental Health Peer Support Groups

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DENTON, TX (November 24, 2015): The Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team wasted no time in taking their first action last week at their monthly meeting after formally adopting their vision and mission. They recommended new behavioral health funding to the board of directors of United Way of Denton County to NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Denton County for the expansion of two NAMI Connection Recovery Support Groups. The recommendation was unanimously approved by the 31 appointed members of the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team. United Way of Denton County’s board of directors also approved the request unanimously at their board meeting later that day.

"The formation and early progress of the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team has exceeded our expectations," shares Gregory J. Sawko, United Way of Denton County board chair. "The United Way of Denton County board of directors were eager to take action on this recommendation for funding of expanded behavioral health services in Denton County. Knowing that the request originated from people in our community who struggle each day to find behavioral health help and was then analyzed by experts serving on the Child and Family Systems workgroup of the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team made it a matter of urgency for United Way of Denton County."

"The Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team is key to creating the systematic change needed to improve access to behavioral health services in Denton County," shared Judge Barbara Gailey, Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team chair. "The formation of the Consumer Workgroup was invaluable. Funding to expand NAMI support groups in Denton County is the first of many to validate the needs of our community and to those who need it the most."

The new peer to peer support group funding to NAMI Denton was recommended by the Child and Family Systems workgroup of the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team as a result of feedback provided by the Consumer work group. The Consumer workgroup consists of residents and or caregivers either in recovery or living with mental illness and struggling to access local behavioral health services and support.

The vision that the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team adopted is: Comprehensive behavioral health for every person in Denton County. 

The adopted mission of the collective impact initiative is:

The Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team will advocate and facilitate a collaborative person- centered behavioral health system to repair and restore lives:

  • Ensure behavioral health services are available to meet the needs of all
  • Assess data for continuous outcome measurements
  • Prioritize data driven recommendations
  • Provide a continuum of care

This collective impact structure was recommended by the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute March 2015, the group met for the first time June 2015 and adopted their charter, bylaws and elected officers at their June 2015 meeting.

The group represents the needs of communities across Denton County and serves as a catalyst for behavioral health system change.  The following appointees serve on the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team:

Denton County Commissioner’s Court: Commissioner Bobbie J. Mitchell
Denton County Commissioner’s Court: Judge Coby Waddill
Denton County Commissioner’s Court: Joe Mulroy, Community Member
Denton County Commissioner’s Court: Dr. Matt Richardson, Health Department Director
Denton County Commissioner’s Court: Dr. Kathryn Stream
City of Denton: Mayor Chris Watts
City of Denton: Bryan Langley, Assistant City Manager
City of Lewisville: Councilman Tj Gilmore
City of Lewisville: Melinda Galler, Assistant City Manager
City of Krum: Councilwoman Cindy "Sanden" Daughhtee
Denton Regional Medical Center: Nicki Roderman,  Chief Nursing Officer
Texas Health Presbyterian Denton: Dr. Timothy Harris, Chief Medical Officer
Medical Center of Lewisville: Jim Russell, Chief Operating Officer
Denton County MHMR: Barbara Gailey, Board of Directors
Health Services of North Texas: Louise Baldwin, Board of Directors
Denton Community Health Clinic: Elizabeth Ferring, Board of Directors
Beacon Health Options: Gary Seguin, Program Director
Cigna Health Spring STAR+PLUS Medicaid: Gina Warr, Behavioral Health Manager
Denton ISD: Dr. Richard Valenta, Deputy Superintendent of Schools
Lewisville ISD: Monya Crow,  CHOICES Coordinator
Texas Woman’s University: Dr. Monica Mendez-Grant, Vice President of Student Life
University of North Texas: Dr. Teresa McKinney, Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs & Wellness
North Central  Texas College: Dr. Roxanne Del-Rio, Associate Dean for Denton County Campuses
City of Denton Police: Chief Lee Howell
City of Lewisville Police: Chief Russ Kerbow
Denton County Sherriff’s Office: Chief Deputy Randy Plemons
Denton Housing Authority: Dr. Bill Giese, Board of Directors
Denton Affordbale Housing: Prudence Sanchez, Board of Directors
Wellness Alliance for Total Children’s Health (WATCH): Dr. Lisa Elliott, WATCH Coalition Chair
United Way of Denton County: Dr. Derrell Bulls, Board of Directors

More information about the Denton County Behavioral Health Leadership Team is available at UnitedWayDenton.org/DCBHLT

ABOUT UNITED WAY OF DENTON COUNTY

United Way of Denton County, Inc. is a local and autonomous 501(c)3 non-profit community-based organization led by a governing board of volunteer directors and advised by lifetime members.  We work to improve lives across Denton County by focusing on education, income (financial stability) and health – the building blocks for a good life.  Through the work of collective impact initiatives and partnerships with local non-profit organizations, we help children and youth realize their potential, families achieve financial stability and communities to become healthy.  For more information about donating or volunteering, visit www.unitedwaydenton.org or call 940-566-5851.