Mental Health Awareness Month

National Mental Health Awareness Month

Dear Friends,

These are unprecedented times as we dealing with the physical and emotional challenges of COVID-19. Two months into the battle with this extraordinary pandemic, we have all been touched by mental health challenges of anxiety, grief, isolation, and stress whether by the direct assault of the virus on our personal lives and that of our friends and family, or its impact on our livelihood and day-to-day welfare.

That’s what makes this year’s Mental Health Awareness Month — May 2020 — so special and so important. Our planning committee, in collaboration with Mental Health America, our national parent organization, will be focusing on the theme “Tools 2 Thrive” for the month of May. These tools include fun, lighthearted strategies that serve to bring balance and a brief respite to the stress of today’s uncertainty.

We’ll also be highlighting how the mental health workforce — professionals, peers, volunteers, and community leaders — are using mobile technology to make themselves available and accessible in new and innovative ways.

So follow the calendar on our Facebook page to connect with a new “tool” every day of the month. We urge you to save and reuse the ones that work for you. And please, share these tools with your family and friends.

On behalf of Association for Mental Health and Wellness in Suffolk and the Mental Health Association of Nassau County, we wish you and your family good health and good mental health!


Michael Stoltz, LCSW
Jeffrey McQueen, MBA, LCDC
Executive Director


Nearly 1 in 5 adults, more than 18%, in the U.S. experience mental illness in a given year.

5-6% of American adults have a serious mental illness; about 2% have disorders that are long-term and disabling, contributing to very high rates of unemployment and poor living conditions.

More than 450 million people around the world live with mental illnesses.

20-25% of Americans have a diagnosable mental and/or substance use disorder in any given year: 6.8 million people with an addiction have a mental illness.

There were approximately 20.6 million people in the United States over the age of 12 with an addiction in 2011, excluding tobacco.

Over 3 million people in 2011 received treatment for their addiction.

The Long Island Coalition estimated that there are approximately 3,000 homeless people in Nassau County and 64 of them are living on the streets.

30-40% of homeless adults and 15-20% of people in jails and prisons in the United States have a serious mental illness. This is often accompanied by substance abuse problems in both these populations.

As many as 10% of children have a serious emotional disturbance, contributing to school failure and other serious problems.

Just over 20 percent of children, either currently or at some point during their life, have had a seriously debilitating mental disorder.

It is estimated that 1 in 68 children in the US have autism.

As the number of older adults doubles over the next two decades so will the number of older adults with mental disordersThis includes 5.5 million older adults who currently have Alzheimer’s disorder or other dementia. Without advances in prevention, this will rise to 11 million older adults with dementia by 2050.

11 to 20% of veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars (Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom) have been diagnosed with PTSD.

30% of soldiers develop mental problems within 3 to 4 months of being home.

Depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (aka PTSD, an anxiety disorder that follows experiencing a traumatic event) are the most common mental health problems faced by returning troops.