Swope Health

Swope Health honored in Mental Health Awareness Month

Since 1949, May has been designated as Mental Health Awareness Month by the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

The national designation is meant to encourage making mental health top of mind, without stigma, and to advocating for public policies that prioritize access to mental healthcare for all. It is also a prime opportunity to offer education on mental health.

As Kansas City’s largest community health center and certified community behavioral health center, Swope Health is a cornerstone in local mental health advocacy and service.

This month, Swope Health will receive recognition for its role in serving mental health with an award from the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.’s Kansas City Metropolitan Area Graduate Chapters. Swope Health will be honored at an event at 6 p.m. Monday, May 6, at the University of Central Missouri, Lee’s Summit Campus, 1101 NW Innovation Parkway, Lee’s Summit, MO 64086.

The award is titled “Honoring Swope Health – A Trauma-Informed Care Program Making a Positive Difference for the Community.” The event is open to college students and public and registration is requested by May 3.

The purpose of the event is to “use collective efforts to fight stigma and raise awareness related to depression, anxiety, and trauma.” The event also features a panel discussion, with:

  • Penny Rice, addiction therapist
  • Breora Page, school-based therapist
  • Carla Lee, Swope Health’s Youth Behavioral Health Liaison
  • And moderator Sylvya Stevenson, founder and president of the National Congress of Black Women-KC

The event and the award to Swope Health are also commemorated in a proclamation issued by the City of Kansas City.

“All of us at Swope Health are so honored by this award,” said Josette Mitchell, executive vice president of Behavioral Health at Swope Health. “This puts a welcome spotlight on our associates who bring empathy, compassion, open dialog and enormous talent, skills, and training to work with individuals and families in our community. We are proud of this moment to shine.”

Swope Health is a champion for mental health services and an advocate for destigmatizing mental illness. The Behavioral Health department provides services in substance-use disorders; counseling for adults and children; medication-assisted treatment; individual, family and group therapy; crisis intervention; residential care services; job placement and much more.  In 2023, Swope Health served more than 7,300 individuals.

Learn more about Swope Health’s Behavioral Health services online or by visiting us at Swope Health Central.

Fast Facts

  • 1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year
  • 1 in 20 U.S. adults experience serious mental illness each year
  • 1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year
  • 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75% by age 24
  • Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 10-14






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