All communities are affected by behavioral health challenges. In this video, a young African American mother recounts the loss of a teenage son who died by suicide. He was a promising student and star athlete, and many were not aware of his struggles. If you or someone you know is struggling with mental or behavioral health issues, please be aware that help is available. Check out these free suicide prevention trainings.
Increasing and improving mental and behavioral health resources for Coachella Valley residents has long been a priority for the Desert Healthcare District and Foundation Board.
Since 2018, when the District and Foundation launched a Behavioral Health Initiative, the Board has allocated $3 million to support behavioral health services and programs. That was followed in 2019 with a valley-wide behavioral health needs assessment, commissioned by the District and Foundation.
The assessment provided insight and prompted the development of a behavioral health improvement plan. In 2021, the District and Foundation took important steps to advance this effort:
* Jana Trew was hired as the District and Foundation's Senior Program Officer - Behavioral Health to provide direction and support in realizing Board-approved policies.
* A new five-year strategic plan, adopted by the Board, included as its No. 3 goal: to proactively expand community access to behavioral/mental health services.
* Ms. Trew began meeting with various behavioral health and community leaders from the valley and Riverside County to identify stakeholders, services, and challenges related to behavioral health.
After a year of intensive groundwork involving 60 stakeholders in working groups and a steering committee, the Coachella Valley Behavioral Health Collective was established in 2023 by the Desert Healthcare District and Foundation and Riverside University Health System - Behavioral Health. District and Foundation Chief Program Officer Donna Craig and RUHS - Behavioral Health Director Dr. Matthew Chang co-chair its steering committee.
The Collective now has a range of community representation with 38 participating organizations. Their expertise includes education, healthcare, civic leadership, youth support, and more.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony took place Thursday (Dec. 14), celebrating the opening of Coachella Valley Behavioral Health in Indio. The hospital will provide acute inpatient care for adults 18 and older, all genders. The event was attended by Desert Healthcare District and Foundation Board Directors and staff.
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- Collaborating with community partners to address current and future behavioral health needs
- Improving access to behavioral health services and resources for all Coachella Valley residents