For more than 20 years, the Guild Association has directed a small portion of its annual fundraising toward priority research and hospital funding needs. The Guild Association Board of Trustees selects recipients for Funding Hope awards to meet the emerging needs of patients.
Below is one of the Funding Hope projects from last year. Read about other recently supported projects in the 2016 Funding Hope Progress Report (PDF).
Odessa Brown Children’s Clinic
Early mental healthcare plants seeds for success
Odessa Brown Children’s Clinic provides so much more than healthcare. Since 1970, the clinic has met the medical, dental, social and emotional needs of children – truly a “medical home” for families in Seattle’s Central District and beyond.
When the Guild Association made the commitment to fund early mental healthcare services at Odessa Brown two years ago, a powerful shift occurred. The team began to serve more young children, from birth to age 5 – a change that is expected to reap great rewards. “By meeting mental health needs of children early, we can head off bigger issues like literacy, juvenile detention and teen pregnancy later on,” says Mark Fadool, clinical director of mental health services.
Funding from the Guild Association was used to pilot an integrated care model, in which mental health staff join patients during their medical appointments to check in, ask questions and identify opportunities to tighten the safety net. By tackling mental health issues in the medical environment, families get the message that it’s part of being healthy, not a stigma or weakness. “We knew we wanted to embed staff within the medical team, and the Guild Association’s funding enabled us to achieve and sustain it,” Fadool says.
The Birth to 5 team – which includes Fadool, a social worker and two community care coordinators (one of whom is bilingual in English and Spanish) – sends tremendous gratitude to the Guild Association. “We feel like we’re starting something new and powerful and meeting a real mental health need for families,” says Fadool. “Without the Guild Association’s generosity, this program wouldn’t have gotten off the ground.”