By the SHINE Initiative
May 4. 2016
May is recognized throughout the United States and several countries around the world as Mental Health Month and the SHINE Initiative recently launched its month-long awareness campaign by awarding grants totaling $55,000 to 13 local human service agencies and educational institutions in Central Massachusetts to support mental health education and related services.
The checks were awarded on May 2nd during a reception hosted by Fidelity Bank in Leominster to also celebrate the start of the SHINE Initiative’s 8th annual Quarter Mile campaign, which was established in 2009 by the bank’s directors and employees as a fundraising event to support community mental wellness.
“It’s only appropriate that we choose this month to recognize and support the outstanding work performed each and every day by partners in our community to promote the mental wellness of young people,” said Paul Richard, executive director of the SHINE Initiative.
Since 2009 Fidelity Bank, its patrons and other donors have raised more than $150,000 (the equivalent of 600,000 quarters) for the Quarter Mile campaign. Additional funds raised on behalf of the SHINE Initiative have enabled it in the past four years to award more than $200,000 in grants to more than 25 public schools, colleges and universities, civic organizations and mental health agencies.
Ed Manzi, Jr., chairman and CEO of Fidelity Bank and chairman of the SHINE Initiative Advisory Board, paid tribute to the grant recipients and noted the efforts of young people who are adding their voices to the conversation “to make mental illness a mainstream health issue.”
The agencies and institutions that were awarded grants are:
Alternatives, Auburn Public Schools, Boys & Girls Club of Fitchburg and Leominster, Boys & Girls Club of Worcester, Fitchburg Public Schools, Gardner Public Schools, Jewish Family & Children’s Service, Leominster Education Foundation, Millbury Public Schools, Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical High School, Perkins, Worcester Public Schools, and Worcester State University.