May is National Mental Health Awareness Month
Join the Maryland State Department of Education’s (MSDE) Division of Early Childhood, the Institute for Innovation & Implementation at the University of Maryland School of Social Work, and thousands of schools and programs nationwide to help reinforce the message that positive mental health is critical to young children’s social-emotional development from birth. During National Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the MSDE Division of Early Childhood will join early learning communities across the country to raise awareness of children’s mental health needs, with a focus on the Maryland Children’s Mental Health Week and National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day.
May 5-11 is Children’s Mental Health Week!
According to the Mental Health Association of Maryland, young children exposed to five or more adverse or traumatic life events in the first three years of childhood face a 76 percent likelihood of having one or more delays in their cognitive, language, or emotional development.
As one of the state’s Community Champions for the 2019 Children’s Mental Health Matters! Campaign, the MSDE Division of Early Childhood has partnered with Maryland’s mental health community again this year to reaffirm our commitment to children’s mental health.
The goal of the 2019 Children’s Mental Health Matters! Campaign is to reduce the stigma of mental health, let parents know that they are not alone in caring for children with mental health needs, and connect parents and families throughout Maryland with support systems and resources. This statewide campaign is a collaboration of the Mental Health Association of Maryland and the Maryland Coalition of Families, with support from the Maryland Department of Health, Behavioral Health Administration.
May 6 is National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day!
On Monday, May 6, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) put children’s mental health in the spotlight during its 14th annual National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day. This year’s theme is “Suicide Prevention: Strategies That Work,” with SAMHSA focusing on the impact that suicide has on children, youth, young adults, families, and communities.
Click here for more information about SAMHSA’s Awareness Day event.
Below are resources for early care and education providers, and parents and families:
- 2019 Calendar: Tips for Fostering Resiliency in Your Child (English)
- 2019 Calendar: Tips for Fostering Resiliency in Your Child (Spanish)
- Early Childhood Book List
- Pyramid Model Training for Preschool Classrooms
- Children’s Mental Health Matters! Campaign: Facts for Educators
- Children’s Mental Health Matters! Campaign: Facts for Families
- Mental Health Tips for Families
- Milestones: Understanding Your Child’s Social and Emotional Development from Birth to Age 5
The MSDE Division of Early Childhood also offers various resources and programs such as the Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health (IECMH) Consultation Project and Maryland’s SEFEL Pyramid Model. The IECMH improves staff, programs, and families’ ability to prevent, identify, treat, and reduce the impact of social, emotional, and other mental health problems among children birth through 5 years old. SEFEL offers an evidence-based, comprehensive approach to support the early childhood workforce in promoting young children’s healthy social-emotional development.