2005 Lilly Reintegration Award Winners
Treatment Team Awards
Brushes with Life: Art Artists, & Mental Illness; Chapel Hill, NC
Brushes with Life: Art, Artists, & Mental Illness is an art gallery located just outside the psychotic disorders inpatient unit of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill Neuroscience Hospital. Approximately 150 artists - former inpatients, current clinic outpatients and clients from a local clubhouse - have displayed their artwork in the gallery since it first opened in December 2000. The gallery offers space for individuals to display their creativity while promoting recovery and decreasing stigma by spreading the message that people with mental illness are both productive and creative.
In addition to the permanent gallery, Brushes with Life has created a traveling exhibit to share the artwork and educate the broader community about mental illness. Thus far, the traveling exhibit has been hosted by local churches and at the Raleigh Durham International Airport. Additionally, the program has collaborated with the North Carolina Museum of Art to curate a larger exhibit at the museum, and this exhibit is ready to travel to art centers statewide.
Jonathan O. Cole Consumer Mental Health Resource Center; Belmont, MA
The Jonathan O. Cole Consumer Mental Health Resource Center utilizes a consumer-operated approach and a close partnership with the psychiatric community to create programs designed to help mental health consumers achieve full and healthy lives. The Resource Center provides educational material, training for the mental health community and media outreach programs to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness.
The Center was founded, created and is staffed entirely by mental health consumers who have dealt successfully with mental illness and who understand the questions that arise when someone needs psychiatric help. Volunteers use their experience from programs such as vocational counseling, clubs, educational events and inpatient support groups as stepping-stones to employment outside of a psychiatric treatment environment. The Cole Resource Center is focused on building self-esteem, breaking isolation, providing hope and helping individuals gain respect within the community and reduce internalized as well as societal stigma.
ACES: Action Coalition to Ensure Stability; Indianapolis, IN
The Action Coalition to Ensure Stability (ACES) serves Marion County homeless adults, or those at risk of becoming homeless, who have substance abuse, mental illness and health care needs. Since 1999, ACES has served over 350 individuals through an integrated recovery model that coordinates multiple agencies into a seamless system of care. ACES' core value of building on individual strengths is reflected in program actions. Services must be member-centered and directed, and the needs and desires of the member are the single most important factors in deciding services to be provided. Each member is seen as the director of his or her care, and treatment begins with a strengths-based assessment - a culturally competent approach that works to incorporate the history, beliefs, traditions and member's individualized approach to building his or her own solutions.
The Guilford Center’s Greensboro Program for Assertive Community Treatment (PACT) Team; Greensboro, NC
The Guilford Center's Greensboro Program for Assertive Community Treatment (PACT) Team was designed to be an interdisciplinary team focused on providing comprehensive, community-based psychiatric treatment, rehabilitation and support to persons with serious and persistent mental illness. This team of diverse and experienced professionals, whose backgrounds include case management, rehabilitation, counseling, nursing, and psychiatry, provide such services. The team is comprised of two nurses, an employment specialist, a substance abuse counselor, a case manager, a licensed psychologist, a rehabilitation technician, a team leader and a physician. PACT provides the most intensive level of service to people with severe and persistent mental illness in Greensboro.
Home Sweet Home
Home Developments Group; Kent, OH
The Home Developments Group was founded in order to manage the housing resources provided by Coleman Professional Services, a not-for-profit organization that provides people who have a history of mental illness with the tools needed to become positive contributors to society through recovery and training. The organization owns and operates several apartment units, supported living sites and group homes where people suffering from mental illness can focus on their recovery. The Home Developments Group's program is designed to familiarize and educate residents of their rights and responsibilities and to help them with the care and upkeep needed to maintain the condition of their housing. By giving them this responsibility, as well as providing vocational skills training and employment services, the Group not only helps individuals recover but also allows them to begin working again to regain their independence.
HomeBase Program; Columbia, SC
HomeBase is a unique program designed to help break the cycle of homelessness for persons with mental illness. The program combines treatment for mental illness and housing by providing the stability and services needed to help make the transition from homelessness to permanent housing. The program secures housing and provides intensive community-based services to homeless individuals and families with mental illness or dual diagnosis (mental illness with substance abuse). The program's holistic approach provides basic living skills such as interpersonal/social skills, financial management and parenting skills, as well as mental health and substance abuse counseling.
The Mental Illness Recovery Center (MIRC), a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide local services to individuals recovering from mental illness and/or severe emotional problems in the Midlands of South Carolina, developed this program. At the time of winning this Award, the US Department of Housing & Urban Development was studying the program's success as a "Best Practice" model for use nationwide. The HomeBase program allows individuals to regain their independence, accomplish their goals, rejoin their families and become productive members of their communities.
On the Job
Employment Works; Grants Pass, OR
In 1998, Options for Southern Oregon, Inc. created a vocational program called Employment Works, based on the Individual Placement and Support model. The project, emphasizing competitive employment as a pathway toward recovery, focuses on rapid community job search with ongoing support to enable individuals to meet their personal goals. The program has received support from SAMHSA, agency reserves, and local mental health and vocational funds. In addition to providing consultation to begin new programs in four other Oregon counties, Employment Works' staff has provided assistance in a national evaluation process of evidence-based supported employment.
During 2005, Options opened a new Employment Works program in the adjacent county. Seven staff in the two counties served a combined total of more than 167 consumers. Since the project began, more than 295 consumers have had competitive work placements.
Café 54; Tucson, AZ
Café 54 evolved from the belief that work is a vital component in the recovery process for individuals who have mental illness, and that in order to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness, focus must be shifted from disabilities to abilities. The Café is an employment training program that provides individuals recovering from mental illness with a safe place to express their inherent talents and skills, test their ability to perform job tasks, allow them to grow in their confidence and to reintegrate into society. The supportive employment training facility places high expectations on participants in order to prepare them for employment in the community. Café 54 also provides an array of vocational supports such as job development and placement, supported employment services and job coaching. The Café opened its doors to the public in July of 2004 through funding from the Community Partnership of Southern Arizona and Rehabilitation Services Administration.
Bridgehaven, Inc.; Louisville, KY
Bridgehaven, Inc. has been a pioneer in the field of rehabilitation since it opened in 1958. Bridgehaven was the third community-based program in the United States to assist persons with severe mental illness by helping them live, work and socialize outside of a psychiatric hospital. The psychiatric rehabilitation and recovery services assist individuals in achieving personally meaningful role functioning and community integration.
Bridgehaven members and staff identify individuals' learning and support needs and provide the education and support required to learn and use new skills. Two program formats meet a diverse membership's needs: a psychosocial clubhouse, and a structured classroom and experiential learning model. Members develop hope, motivation and readiness to assume personal responsibility for recovery while learning independent living and job skills, conflict management, improved self-awareness and how to live and work successfully with others in the community.
Fellowship House Psychosocial Rehabilitation Program; Miami, FL
Fellowship House was founded in 1973 as a result of the nationwide de-institutionalization of individuals coping with mental illness. A Community Support Program grant allowed for the establishment of a program to serve as a demonstration project for the State of Florida. Therefore, Fellowship House was developed, patterned after the basic premise of the Clubhouse model. This innovative approach, which emphasizes consumer input as the essential component of program operation, remains the premier methodology for the treatment of mental illness. A provider of comprehensive treatment services, Fellowship House's Psychosocial Rehabilitation program provides a network of social supports to assist adults as they strive for recovery.
Denis McCrory; Boston, MA
Dr. McCrory, a native New Yorker, came to Boston in the early 60's to study Psychiatry at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center. He remained there for nearly a decade as a clinical supervisor and as psychiatric director for a rehabilitation counselor-training program. He also worked as a child psychiatrist at the South Shore Mental Health Center in Quincy, MA, for over 30 years.
Over the years, Dr. McCrory learned that a strengths-based, step-wise treatment/rehabilitation approach to services led to much more hopeful outcomes than he had learned to expect in his training. Dr. McCrory brought this "vision of recovery" to his own practice and to his various roles as consultant, program developer, teacher, lecturer, author and advocate. He currently continues his practice, serves as a consultant for the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission and co-chairs the Friends: Voices of Rehabilitation and Recovery. Dr. McCrory is a member of the Fountain House Council for Education, Training and Advocacy, and sits on the NAMI Massachusetts Board of Directors and a number of other committees and task forces.
Sharon (Sam) Luzader - Southwestern Indiana Mental Health Center; Evansville, IN
Sharon "Sam" Luzader has been the director of community support services for Southwestern Indiana Mental Health Center since the program's inception in 1976. In her tenure, she has cultivated a multi-faceted approach to community-based services that has grown from a small outpost serving ten people to a vast network of services exemplifying best practices. Sam has implemented programs ranging from supportive day treatment to supervised group homes, semi-independent apartment living, assertive community treatment and supported employment. Sam has volunteered on multiple statewide committees and has served on the board of numerous mental health organizations.
On a personal level, Sam's commitment to individuals with mental illness was most evident when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1996. Despite undergoing prolonged treatment, she continued to work virtually every day, serving as an inspiration to her staff with her dedication and continued optimism.
Isaac Brown, Brooklyn, NY
Isaac S. Brown's art and advocacy have contributed greatly to the mental health community. At the time of winning this Reintegration Award, he served as a Peer Support Specialist/Trainer with The Mental Health Empowerment Project, a New York organization that promotes self-help and empowerment. Isaac has also served as a Director of Advocacy and Housing for ten years at Baltic Street Mental Health Board, a consumer-run mental health organization that assists those who are in recovery from mental illness achieve successful and satisfying lives in their communities. A self-taught artist, Isaac has traveled the world extensively, painting and exhibiting his work throughout Europe. He has also been a diamond cutter, lumberjack, welder and soldier in the Israeli army. Diagnosed at age 22 with schizophrenia, Isaac has spent more than two decades painting. Isaac’s experiments with both color and texture allowed him to paint canvases with breathtaking clarity that portray his vision of conflicting forces in the universe.
Andrea R. Taylor; New Smyrna Beach, FL
Journey to Recovery is a thirty-six piece collection of abstract works of art created by Andrea R. Taylor using acrylics on canvas to attempt to paint feelings, emotions, and concepts of certain mental illnesses. Andrea began her therapeutic work in 1992 and discovered that when she saw her negative and haunting feelings and emotions in some structured form, they seemed to have less power over her. Hence, painting became a pivotal factor in her struggle for recovery from post-traumatic stress syndrome, borderline personality disorder, bipolar disorder, and bereavement due to the suicide of her only child, who also suffered from bipolar disorder. Journey to Recovery is a traveling exhibit and has been on display in several counties in Ohio. During this process, Andrea discovered that other consumers could relate to her works and non-consumers could be enlightened about what a person with mental illness may experience on a day-to-day basis. In this way, her work also raised societal awareness of mental illness.
Alex Myhaver; Portland ME
After graduating summa cum laude from the University of Southern Maine in 1999, schizophrenia took hold of Alex Myhaver's life. The defining moment of his illness was on July 1, 1999, when he used karate to "defeat World War Three and the Nuclear Holocaust on the Eastern Promenade" in Portland, Maine. Alex spent the next three years of his life homeless and without medication. In April of 2002, he was involuntarily committed to the Augusta Mental Health Institute (AMHI).
After his release from AMHI in the fall of 2002, Alex fully embraced his recovery. Alex has shared his story of mental illness and recovery to provide hope for others. His story truly came full circle in July of 2005, when he was asked to speak at AMHI's Closing Ceremony, the same institution where he was involuntarily committed just a little over three years earlier. Alex was promoted to fulltime work as a Peer Outreach Coordinator after removing himself from social service disability, and is truly an inspiration to others of the power and hope of recovery.
Robert (Bob) S. Forrey; Lititz, PA
For over twenty years, Robert (Bob) S. Forrey denied that he had an illness and refused treatment. Failed marriages, reckless living, hospitalizations and time in prison filled those years. During a hospitalization in 1999, he finally began to accept his illness and seek treatment. Things changed dramatically. Bob married, became the executive director of the Lancaster County (PA) Consumer Satisfaction Team. At the time of winning this Award, graduate student, Bob was working toward his dream of earning a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology. He has frequently been called upon to share his story to encourage and inspire others. He has truly come a long way and is a powerful example to others.
The Thresholds Community Scholar Program; Chicago, IL
Pioneered as the first of its kind in 1989, the Thresholds Community Scholar Program is a unique college preparatory program for people with serious mental illness that remains unduplicated in the size and scope of available services. Still considered the defining model of supported education, aspects of the program have been replicated successfully throughout the nation. The program includes an inspirational staff of consumers who manage a rigorous college preparatory program, mobile support on campus, support groups and a financial scholarship program. The program has helped more than 500 students meet their goals and graduate from many area post-secondary educational institutions.
Rosalyn Bell; New Haven, CT
Rosalyn Bell has courageously worked to overcome her personal struggle with schizophrenia. She acts as a peer mentor and is a shining example to others recovering from mental illness at Fellowship Place, a social rehabilitation agency in New Haven, Connecticut. She took a hands-on approach to assisting others with their individual roads to recovery by leading two support groups, "Double Trouble" and "Schizophrenia Anonymous." Last summer, Ms. Bell attended the national conference for leaders of "Schizophrenia Anonymous," which was held in Detroit, Michigan. This was a personal milestone for Ms. Bell. For the first time in her life, she was able to overcome her anxiety and travel out of the state.
Ms. Bell has fully embraced her role as a mentor and infused it with passion, commitment, personal experience and skill to become an incredible role model for people working toward their own recovery from mental illness.
April Kame; Phoenix, AZ
April Kame overcame the stigma surrounding mental illness by inspiring her peers as well as the staff who have helped her recover from bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder. Ms. Kame experienced a tremendous turnaround in her own mental health, and she continues to successfully manage her illnesses by being a mentor and role model to those around her. She has not only helped herself, but she has also assisted her peers in overcoming the barriers of living with a mental disorder.
Ms. Kame encourages and supports others by helping out with activities ranging from everyday tasks like reading a bus schedule and shopping for groceries to accomplishing life goals like going back to school. She was scheduled to complete a nursing program last January, after which she planned to get her R.N. degree to continue to help others with mental illness.
Calvin Hill, Consultant to the Dallas Cowboys, Former Team Member; Great Falls, VA
Former star running back, Calvin Hill, has been the driving force in helping National Football League players with mental illness get the support they need. Hill has not only helped the Dallas Cowboys create an in-house program for players with conditions such as bipolar disorder, but he has also helped foster an environment in which mental health concerns are addressed with an informed understanding.
In sport where pain is paramount, Hill has encouraged these men to speak out about their conditions and helped their organization to see that adjustments can be made to help players deal with their concerns rather than being ostracized for them. Due to its success, the Cowboys’ program is now being replicated by other NFL teams. Lineman Dimitrius Underwood, who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, has credited the Dallas Cowboys support program with saving his life.
State Representative Garnet Coleman; Houston TX
A nationally recognized mental health advocate, Texas State Representative Garnet Colemen has been instrumental in expanding and improving mental health services in Texas. Just this year, he authored a bill to require all law enforcement officers to receive crisis-intervention training for dealing with persons with mental illness, and he introduced legislation to establish a program to ensure that individuals with mental illness who are in the criminal justice system have access to mental health treatment. Rep. Coleman is a powerful symbol of the potential of people living with mental illnesses. His decision to speak openly about his personal struggle with bipolar disorder is testament to his commitment to reducing stigma and improving lives.
HBO; New York, NY
In addition to raising awareness of mental illness through innovative programming, HBO has worked behind-the-scenes to dispel stigma and provide employment opportunities to individuals living with these illnesses. HBO has been a long-time supporter of Fountain House, New York City’s first clubhouse, and since 1990, the media company has served as a transitional employment partner providing entry-level positions and on-the-job support to individuals reintegrating into the workforce. Additionally, the company has worked closely with its insurance provider to ensure that its employees have easy and affordable access to mental health treatment when needed.