Moving Forward, Some Things Remain Constant

To VTSPC friends and partners, 

Last week I saw a Facebook post of a dear colleague who works in healthcare that pulled at my heartstrings. It spoke about the difficult decisions people are facing regarding personal and family safety and work responsibilities.  I know this colleague has the resources (mind, body and spirit) to pull off what is being asked. She also has food, water and shelter – the basic necessities of life, upon which we are all reflecting about, more each day. Still…

I have been thinking a lot about how we will get through this. The logical order of things gets scrambled when the inputs change hourly, therefore, thinking in terms of short, intermediate and long term outcomes is a bit challenging right now. 

Our Guiding Principles

  • Equity and Access
  • Evidence and Outcomes-based Practices
  • Innovation
  • Collaboration
  • Community-oriented

Our Mission

To build a foundation for healthy communities, through educational resources, professional development and practice improvement, research, policy development, evaluation, and consult.

Some things remain certain:

There are a lot of people doing the best they can. People are working hard to fulfill their responsibilities while making adjustments personally, with their networks, and by interacting with the systems that promise to maintain stability. Our American society is largely observing the guidelines our government is providing while “COVID-19” and the meaning of pandemic becomes a permanent part of our consciousness. 

CHL/VTSPC thanks everyone who continues to function under this pressure, and for the bonds of community that hold us together as families, organizations, communities, and as a state.  We are thinking of you, and you, and you, during this period of time, especially our partners in healthcare and education, and in community services. We are thankful that government and legislature continue to do the work they signed up for, and are elected to do.    

CHL/VTSPC is moving forward to address priority health issues through our projects focused on mental health promotion, prevention of mental health issues, substance misuse, and suicide and we are retooling some of this work to meet the needs of these projects.

This pandemic makes us think further about how we carry out CHL’s core values and mission in practice, while we work on the projects, policies and programs that further expose the gaps of resources and weaknesses in systems of services. 

*CHL Projects, Policies and Programs:

  • Suicide Prevention- promoting Zero Suicide and comprehensive approaches in multiple communities
  • Opioid Medical Education Training: Screening Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment for Emergency Room staff in counties in VT with high Emergency Department use for opioid related crisis funded by VT Department of Health 
  • Regional Prevention Partnership trainings and other Substance Misuse Prevention Projects
  • Umatter® Youth and Young Adults mental health wellness promotion and community action
  • Connecting Rural Communities Mental Health in Grand Isle County with special focus on cultural considerations for working with Abenaki
  • Umatter® Mental Health in several high schools in Vermont
  • Rutland Suicide Safe Care project coordinating efforts among primary care, mental health and hospital partners;
  • Prevention Consultant Certification laying the plans for a new certification for prevention specialists in Vermont

CHL in 2019

Suicide Prevention Trainings/Events

  • 847 Attendees

Substance Misuse Trainings/Events

  • 531 Attendees

We have made it through another winter in Vermont and there is much to look forward to, even during strange times and in uncharted waters. Spring run-off from the mountains is streaming along the roads as it always does.

Please take heart, take care, ask for resources and help when you need it, and stay in touch.

JoEllen Tarallo, Executive Director, on behalf of the CHL Board and Staff

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