May! Hardly said the word and we are already halfway through it. And for us, it started in April, yup, April 26th to be precise where we were joined by 14 volunteers on the Grove in Boise. Our first stint using giant green beach balls to try to promote children’s mental health happened that day at the Capital City Public Market. It went quite well except for the exceptional windy cold weather, but we got by with bungee cords and ankle weights. We repeated at the market on May 10th and had great success talking with families and having them add their hand prints to our hands on a wall canvas.
Yes, May started early, and quickly on the 1st with Idaho Gives Day. We at the Federation extend our sincere thanks to all who contributed to our cause. We more than doubled last year’s total to over $1200 and added several new friends. That day was quickly followed by May 3rd and the Holistic Health Family Fair at the Anderson Center with 25 representatives of mental and physical health care, and you could even get a massage. Even a giant green beach ball was raffled and won. That afternoon in the same location, two panel presentations were offered. One featured three doctors and the other, four parents. The presentations were informative and personal, and appreciated. The presentations were recorded and replayed May 9th on the H&W interactive video system in all 7 regions of the state. The panels will be posted on our webpage soon.
Perhaps the highlight of the week is 3 year old Hadlee Lyon hustling up to Mayor Beiter to receive her prize, accepting it without a word other than thank you, and scurrying back to her sisters. She won the pre-school poster category. Maybe that whole morning at the Mayor’s office was the highlight. Unfortunately not all the kids with winning posters could attend, including the “overall” winning poster by 7th grader Alex Vivian from Idaho Falls, but those who could were excited to be there, and the Mayor couldn’t have been more cordial and official, reading and signing the Boise Proclamation, passing out prizes and giving the kids a chance to have their picture taken with him. Not to mention Representative Sue Chew who was there and also congratulated the winners and posed with winners.
I am happy that proclamations were signed by several Mayors throughout the state and the Governor as well and that there were many other programs in all regions that included awareness walks, lecture series and resource fairs. One must wonder however, how well did we raise awareness and how can we do it better in the future? That is the challenge and why we need your help as we face and overcome it. Congratulations again to all the poster winners, special thanks to all the committee members and volunteers, panelists, Intermountain Hospital, NAMI, and Youth MOVE kids for their support and effort.