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Events

SUICIDE AWARENESS EXPO – 2016

img_7531Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center partnered with several Charleston area organizations to share resources and to bring greater awareness to the issue of suicide in our community. The event was held at Marion Square on Saturday, September 10th and is designed to engage in a conversation about suicide and the many treatment resources available.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

THE LOWCOUNTRY MENTAL HEALTH CONFERENCE – 5 YEAR ANNIVERSARY!

July 28-29, 2016

We celebrated the 5th year of our annual conference in style at the beautiful Gaillard Performance Hall! 970 mental health professionals and 50 vendors attended the two-day conference that included a unique interview with world renowned Psychiatrist, Dr. Irvin Yalom, and a performance from our very own choir that consisted of representatives from churches across the Charleston area.

Stay tuned for our 6th year conference taking place July 27-28, 2017 at the Gaillard Performance Hall. (www.lowcountrymhconference.com)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

CDMHC JOINS LOCAL HOLIDAY PARADES!

Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center participated in three local area holiday parades this year! On Saturday, December 5th we attended the North Charleston Parade, and on Sunday December 6th we were a part of the City of Charleston Christmas Parade. On December 13th we were a part of the Summerville Christmas Parade.

We brought our RV – Highway to ope to all of the events and our Rudolph theme with the Island of Misfit Toys was a big success!

Thanks to all our team for joining us, dressing up, and helping to spread the word about our mental health services!

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THE 4TH ANNUAL LOWCOUNTRY MENTAL HEALTH CONFERENCE

July 30-31, 2015

 
 
Once again, The Lowcountry Mental Health Conference was a big success with 625 attendees and two days of fantastic talks from mental health experts.

We want to thank The Charleston Music hall for being so good to us these past two years!

Stay tuned for our 5th year anniversary conference (www.lowcountrymhconference.com) July 28-29, 2016! The conference continues to grow, and as a result, We are moving to a larger venue – The Gaillard Performance Hall in downtown Charleston. We have our speaker line-up set and believe it is going to be our best yet!
 

THE 2015 PICCOLO ART OF RECOVERY EXHIBIT

May 22 – June 7, 2015

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Charleston’s Piccolo Spoleto Festival has become one of the premier events in the city, and for two full weeks the festival offers an incredible array of performances and displays that attract thousands of visitors from across the globe.

This is the third year The Art of Recovery has been an official member of the Piccolo Visual Arts program!

The Art of Recovery is a living gallery housed in the central office of the Department of Mental Health in Columbia, SC. Over 140 original pieces of artwork from current and former mental health patients were on display at this year’s Piccolo Festival in Charleston with over 30 pieces sold during the event.
 
 
 
 
 
The exhibit continues to play an important role in addressing the issue of stigma associated with mental illness, and the two week event has helped start conversations about the importance of awareness and access to care.
 
17400821694_dd132a25d3_bThe exhibit kicked off it’s two week run with a reception on May 23rd where hundreds of people came together to celebrate the work of these artists. The exhibit was held at the Circular Congregation Church in downtown Charleston, SC.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

CHARLESTON DORCHESTER MHC is Awarded one of the 2014 Connect 4 Mental Health Innovation awards!!

December 02, 2014

From WASHINGTON, DC –(BUSINESS WIRE)– In an effort to better address the needs of the estimated 40 percent of adults living with serious mental illness who do not receive mental health services,1 Connect 4 Mental Health® (C4MH) today announced the winners of the 2014 Community Innovation Awards. With these awards, C4MH partners – the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), the National Council for Behavioral Health (National Council), Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc. and Lundbeck — recognize local mental health organizations across the country that are working to address serious mental illness in their communities at a grassroots level across four service areas: early intervention, creative use of technology, continuity of care and service integration.

“A key to achieving positive outcomes and preventing negative consequences such as homelessness and poverty is through sustainable collaboration between individuals, providers and systems, making C4MH an important catalyst for facilitating these types of collaborative efforts.”

“People with mental illness can and do lead meaningful lives, especially when they are supported in achieving their goals as valued members of their communities,” said Mary Giliberti, Executive Director of NAMI. “A key to achieving positive outcomes and preventing negative consequences such as homelessness and poverty is through sustainable collaboration between individuals, providers and systems, making C4MH an important catalyst for facilitating these types of collaborative efforts.”

The winning organizations in each category are:

Early intervention: NAMI – Collier County
NAMI of Collier County (Naples, FL) provides a comprehensive array of services to support individuals living with mental illness. The organization’s Health Under Guided Systems (HUGS) program, part of a broader mental health initiative known as “Beautiful Minds,” provides universal screenings to support the early identification of behavioral health problems in at-risk children up to age 18. The HUGS program has served more than 3,000 low-income, at-risk youth since 2010.

Creative Use of Technology: Crisis Text Line

Crisis Text Line (CTL) (New York, NY) is the first nationwide, free, 24/7 text hotline for teens experiencing any type of crisis, including mental health-related issues like anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts. In partnership with select crisis centers across the country, CTL hosts a network of 230 trained counselors (as of November 2014), who provide individualized support to teens using CTL’s software. CTL has exchanged more than 3.9 million messages with individuals in need since launching as a pilot program in August of 2013.

Continuity of Care: Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center (CDMHC)

Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center (CDMHC) (Charleston and Summerville, SC) provides emergency services, case management, and evidence- based outpatient counseling and psychiatric treatment for children, adolescents, adults and families. CDMHC’s Assessment/Mobile Crisis Program (A/MC) offers the only 24/7 psychiatric emergency response and intake team in South Carolina, responding to critical mental health issues anywhere in the area that would otherwise go un-served. Between July 2013 and June 2014, the A/MC team helped to prevent 2,080 emergency department admissions, successfully diverting many of those patients to outpatient services.

Service Integration: Robert Young Center

The Robert Young Center (RYC) (Moline, IL) is a comprehensive community mental health center and a fully integrated corporation within UnityPoint Health – Trinity. The RYC has partnered with the local Federally Qualified Community Health Care (CHC) Center in Iowa and Illinois to provide bidirectional integration of primary and behavioral healthcare for individuals with serious mental illness. Through this model, the RYC has helped integrate health services for individuals with serious mental illness, and has saved the state of Illinois more than $8.2 million in Medicaid costs since 2009.

The Community Innovation Awards recipients were selected by a panel of judges from NAMI and the National Council, as well as representatives from the 2013 C4MH national success communities, who will serve as mentors to this year’s award winners. In addition to the mentorship program, the winning organizations will receive a $10,000 award from the C4MH initiative.

“We applaud these organizations, who have found innovative ways to positively impact the lives of people with serious mental illness,” said Linda Rosenberg, president and CEO of the National Council. “By sharing their experiences, resources, and information they inspire us, they allow us to learn from each other and they give communities the chance to replicate success.”

Launched in 2013, C4MH attempts to highlight why broader leadership and collaboration at the community level are important in addressing the needs of individuals living with serious mental illness and show how the experiences of select communities across the nation may serve as models for change. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to addressing mental healthcare locally, there may be best practices and actionable steps that communities could consider as they establish or improve upon their mental health programs or service offerings. To learn more about C4MH, the Community Innovation Awards and the need for community-oriented solutions for serious mental illness visit www.connect4mentalhealth.com.

THE 3RD ANNUAL LOWCOUNTRY MENTAL HEALTH CONFERENCE

August 7-8, 2014

The 3rd Annual Lowcountry Mental Health Conference (August 7-8, 2014) welcomed seven world class mental health experts and advocates for an impressive two days of talks at the Charleston Music Hall in downtown Charleston, SC (www.lowcountrymhconference.com).

IMG_1588610 people from across the country attended the conference, which raised over $32,000 for the Charleston based non-profit, Mental Health Heroes. Attendees were treated to a series of talks that included world -renowned neuroscientist, Mark George, M.D., sharing his cutting edge work on interventions for treatment resistant depression, Dr. Michael Walsh’s discussion on clinical interventions when working with adolescents, and Heisman Trophy winner, former NFL football star, and Mental Health Advocate, Herschel Walker, sharing his story, struggles, and triumphs with his own mental illness.

It was an incredible two-day conference honoring the service of mental health professionals and continuing to position South Carolina as a leader in the growth and expansion of mental health services.
 
 

THE 2014 PICCOLO ART OF RECOVERY EXHIBIT

May 24 – June 8, 2014

Charleston’s Piccolo Spoleto Festival has become one of the premier events in the city, and for two full weeks the festival offers an incredible array of performances and displays that attract thousands of visitors from across the globe.

This is the second year The Art of Recovery has been an official member of the Piccolo Visual Arts program, and that honor is due in large part to the Charleston Department of Cultural Affairs recognizing the quality, power, uniqueness, and importance of the exhibit.

The Art of Recovery is a living gallery housed in the central office of the Department of Mental Health in Columbia, SC. This is the second year that the exhibit has come to Charleston, and it did not disappoint – touching the hearts of hundreds of visitors with over 80 original pieces of artwork from 37 South Carolina artists. Several visitors shared thanks and gratitude for both the quality of the artwork and the emotional connection conveyed by each of the pieces. All of the artists from this exhibit are recovering from mental illness and all have been or are clients of the South Carolina Department of Mental Health.

IMG_1588For the past two years the event has played an important role in addressing the issue of stigma associated with mental illness, and the exhibit has helped start conversations about the importance of awareness and access to care.

The exhibit kicked off it’s two week run with a reception on May 24th where hundreds of people came together to celebrate the work of these artists. The exhibit was held at the Circular Congregation Church in downtown Charleston, SC from May 23rd – June 8th.
 
 
 
 
 
 

THE 10TH ANNUAL LOWCOUNTRY STAR TOY RUN

December 14, 2013

CHARLESTON, SC – Each year we are fortunate to host the Lowcountry Star motorcycle organization as they generously give thousands of dollars to help make the holiday season a special one for many children in the community whose family is impacted by mental illness. On December 14th Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center (CDMHC) staff and family members held the Lowcountry Star Toy Run and gave thanks to Lowcountry Star, a local area non-profit motorcycle riding organization that has been extremely generous in raising funds for CDMHC clients and families. The money donated by Lowcountry Star each year goes to purchasing holiday toys and gifts to clients of CDMHC and their families.
 
The event is filled with food, fun, and fellowship. Children and parents are even given an opportunity to take a motorcycle ride and learn about bike safety!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

THE CDMHC 2013 CLIENT HOLIDAY PARTY!

September 13, 2013


A giant thank you to all who helped plan and execute our annual holiday party!!!! I think it was one of the best, if not the best one ever! The food was plentiful and delicious. The decorations were gorgeous. The music was wonderful -thanks to Isabell’s husband’s duo. The entertainment was fabulous – thanks to choir director Sabrena Sheppard. Finally, the organization was just about perfect – thanks to Sonya’s event planning skills and Maureen’s attention to details! Thank you to Johnnie Stukes and Renee Blake for setting up and taking down. Thanks to all staff who served food, distributed gift bags, and cleaned up.

Thanks to all of our Board Members for their financial contributions and food solicitations which made the party possible. A special thanks to Board Members Regina Brown and Parris Williams for attending the big shebang!

A special thanks to the planning committee, Sonya Jenkins, Karen Oliver, Isabell Smalls, Becca Scott, Lloyd Hale, Cindy Cato, and General Maureen Phlegar, for adding one giant task to their already jammed schedules!

Through all of your efforts, we were able to spread a little holiday cheer amongst those we serve! Thank you!

– Deborah Shogry Blalock
CDMHC Executive Director

 
 
 
 

THE 2013 SUICIDE AWARENESS EXPO

September 14, 2013

Charleston Dorchester Mental Health (CDMHC) teamed up with several community partners to share resources and offer support to the Charleston area community. For the past several years, CDMHC has teamed up to help bring greater awareness to the growing problem of suicide in our country.

We were joined by the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center, MUSC INstitute of Psychiatry, 211 United Way, the Charleston Center, Palmetto Behavioral Health, NAMI Charleston and others during the Farmers Market on Marion Square in downtown Charleston. This year’s event brought the largest turn out yet and gave us an opportunity to discuss the problem of suicide and to spread the word about the excellent resources available.

NBC Count on 2 News covered the event. You can see their story here: COUNT ON 2 STORY
 
 

CHARLESTON COUNTY LEGISLATIVE DELEGATION MEETING HOSTED AT CDMHC

September 3, 2013

Charleston Dorchester Mental Health (CDMHC) hosted the monthly meeting of the Charleston County Legislative Delegation Office at the Charleston Clinic in West Ashley. The Charleston County Legislative Delegation Office serves as a liaison between the public, governmental agencies and the 22 elected state legislators who represent Charleston County. Eight state senators and 14 representatives comprise the delegation.

Deborah Blalock, Executive Director of CDMHC, opened the meeting with an update, overview, and question/answer period focusing on mental health issues in the county and critical CDMHC services. The delegation meeting was a great opportunity to continue to bring mental health awareness to our community.
 

THE 2ND ANNUAL LOWCOUNTRY MENTAL HEALTH CONFERENCE

June 27 & 28th, 2013

Mental Health Heroes, A Charleston based non-profit organization, and the Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center (CDMHC) held their second annual mental health conference at the College of Charleston to a crowd of over 400 people! What started as a nice idea two and a half years ago has now turned into a major event in South Carolina with mental health professionals coming from as far as Hawaii, California, Arizona, Minnesota, Ohio, Georgia, and North Carolina.

The Lowcountry Mental Health Conference has become a major fundraiser event. Revenue from the event goes directly to client care. A significant portion of the money will go to Mental Health Heroes, which offers crisis support for CDMHC clients and their families. The money raised from the conference gives Mental Health Heroes the ability to help clients pay for important medications, help families with electric bills, heat, and a wide variety of other essential needs. In only two years, the conference has far exceeded expectations with earnings for this year’s conference expected to be in the $24,000 range!

The event has also become one of the highest quality conferences for mental health professionals in the southeast. This year’s theme, “The Changing Landscape of Behavioral Healthcare”, brought a wide array of incredible speakers from Fred Osher M.D. (Director of Health Systems & Health Policy at the State Government’s Justice Center) and his talk on “Reducing Recidivism & Promoting Recovery”, to Kenneth Coll M.D. ( VA Charleston Psychiatrist) and his high energy talk on “Psychopharmacology & Anxiety”, to SC DMH’s very own Christopher Wells (Project Director of the SC DMH Trauma Initiative) talk on “An Overview of Grief & Loss Treatment”, and Lloyd Hale’s (CDMHC Certified Peer Support Specialist) inspirational “Recovery Story”.

Deborah Blalock, Executive Director of CDMHC and the leader behind the annual conference, began day one in front of a packed audience at the Physician’s Auditorium. That was followed by a series of excellent talks throughout the day. Day two of the conference began with an introduction by the State Director of the South Carolina Department of Mental Health, John H. Magill. It ended with a highly interactive mental health panel discussion on public safety led by Charleston County Sheriff, J. Al Cannon Jr., SC, DMH Deputy Director Mark Binkley J.D., Peer Support Specialist Lloyd Hale, and the Head of Charleston Dorchester Mental Health’s Assessment/Mobile Crisis Team and Special Operations, Esther Hennessee.

The conference has become a true community partnership and collaboration as the event received considerable support from the College of Charleston’s Office of Community Relations, NAMI Charleston, the Charleston Center, several mental health centers across South Carolina, and a wide variety of other organizations and treatment centers both in and out of state.

We want to thank everyone who attended and who helped organize and put on the conference. There are simply too many people to thank for ensuring that the conference met our high standards!

Stay tuned for our 3rd Annual Event coming in June 2014! You won’t want to miss it!
 

ART OF RECOVERY – A PICCOLO SPOLETO EVENT

May 24 – June 9, 2013

The Department of Mental Health and the Charleston Dorchester Mental Heath Center (CDMHC) hosted a Piccolo Spoleto Art Exhibit at the Circular Congregation Church in downtown Charleston! A kick-off reception was held the evening of May 25th, which was attended by some 150 people including our DMH State Director, John Magill.

What made this event so very special was the recognition received by some of the incredible artists who contributed over 90 pieces that were on display.

The exhibit has received considerable recognition to include articles by the Post & Courier (Click Here) as well as the Charleston City Paper (Click here).

Click HERE to view some of the work from the exhibit.
 

WEST ASHLEY CLINIC – SIDEWALK SALE

May 2, 2013

On May 2, 2013 the West Ashley Clinic of the Charleston Dorchester Community Mental Health Center held its first Sidewalk Sale. This event was headed by Thais Ponder, a clinician serving the North Charleston region. She had seen a similar event at our Dorchester Clinic. The idea was to show case the creative talents of our clients, encourage them to generate some income with their talents and it was a great way to kick off Mental Health Awareness Month. Thais was even able to arrange for the event to be promoted by a local news station. The center hosted 12 clients who sold a variety of items from gently used clothing and house hold items, to handmade jewelry, crafts, sweet grass baskets, and even bonsai trees! Donations were solicited from staff and sold with the proceeds going to Mental Health Heroes. Despite a little rain the event was a success! Many of the clients participating sold items and have expressed interest in participating in another Sidewalk sale. A total of $56.00 was raised for Mental Health Heroes.
 

2ND LOWCOUNTRY MENTAL HEALTH CONFERENCE

June 27-28, 2013

Charleston Dorchester Mental Health is helping to support Mental Health Heroes 2nd Annual Lowcountry Mental Health Conference this June. This two day event is worth up to 10 CEUs for mental health professionals and will have some excellent mental health topics to include:

  • An Overview of Traumatic Grief and Loss – Christopher B. Wells M.Ed.
  • The DSM V: A Critical Review – Matthew T. Dugan MA, LPC & Steven Donaldson, CAC II
  • Integrating Treatment for Co-Occurring Disorders: What Every Clinician Needs To Know – John Roberts, M.D.
  • Psychopharmacology & Anxiety: Current Trends & Tips for Clinicians – Kenneth Coll, M.D.
  • A Framework for Reducing Recidivism and Promoting Recovery for Adults with Behavioral Health Needs – Fred C. Osher, M.D.
  • A Recovery Story: The Good, The Bad, & The Recovery – Lloyd Hale,CPSS
  • A Look At Marketing Innovations For Mental Health – David P. Diana, LPC, NCC
  • The Role of Mental Health in Public Safety: Advice on Protecting the Rights of Your Clients, The Community, and You – (A Panel Discussion with J. Al Cannon Jr. – Sheriff of Charleston County; Mark Binkley – SC DMH Deputy Director; Esther Hennessee – Head of Crisis Management, & Lloyd Hale – Peer Support Specialist)

The conference is being held at the Physicians Auditorium at the College of Charleston. This is a fundraising event with monies earned going to Mental Health heroes to help those suffering form mental illness receive help and support during a crisis. You can learn more about the conference at www.mhheroes.com/conference
 

ART OF RECOVERY AT PICCOLO SPOLETO

May 24 – June 9, 2013

The SC Department of Mental Health in partnership with the Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center will be holding an official exhibit at the 2013 Piccolo Spoleto in Charleston, SC. The Art of Recovery Exhibit will feature art work from artists across South Carolina who have been struggling with and in recovery from mental illness. In 2006, the Art of Recovery program received South Carolina’s highest art award honor – the Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Governor’s Awards for the Arts. Come join us at the Piccolo Spoleto festival! The exhibit is being displayed at Upper Lance Hall at the Circular Congregation Church in downtown Charleston (150 Meeting Street, Charleston, SC).

We will hold a Welcome Reception with food and refreshments on May 25th from 4-7pm. We look forward to seeing you there!

Contact the Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center with questions.
 
 

ANNUAL CLIENT HOLIDAY PARTY

December 7, 2012

The Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center hosted its annual Client Holiday Party on Friday, December 7th. This is one of our largest celebrations of the year with some 100+ clients in attendance from the Charleston and Dorchester Clinics, as well as several residential care facilities.

We have been holding this event for over 10 years, and for many of our clients, it is their only opportunity to celebrate the holidays. The event included lunch, music, a balloon artist, and several gift items such as socks and sweatshirts that were generously donated by organizations in our community.

We want to thank the CDMHC Board of Directors who sponsored the event, the Charleston Baptist Church, which was kind enough to host the event in their grand hall, Thorlo Inc. who generously donated their socks, Family Services staff that helped serve lunch, and the CDMHC staff who helped coordinate and manage all aspects of the event.

Happy Holidays Everyone!

 
 
 
 

LOWCOUNTRY STAR TOY RUN TO BE HELD AS A WAY OF GIVING THANKS

December 8, 2012, 11:45am

CHARLESTON, SC – Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center (CDMHC) staff and family members will hold their Ninth Annual Lowcountry Star Toy Run this December 8, 2012 at 11:45am. The Toy Run event is the center’s way to say thank you to Lowcountry Star, a local area non-profit motorcycle riding organization that has been extremely generous in raising funds for CDMHC clients and families. The money donated by Lowcountry Star each year goes to purchasing holiday toys and gifts to clients of CDMHC and their families.

The event is filled with food, fun, and fellowship. Children and parents are even given an opportunity to take a motorcycle ride and learn about bike safety!
 
 
 
 
 

OCT. 25TH VOCATIONAL LUNCHEON IS A TREMENDOUS SUCCESS

Below is an article summarizing this event, which continues to positively impact the lives of the people we serve at CDMHC.

Recovery In Action

Greetings and Salutations,

On behalf of Joyce Brown and the entire Vocational Team, we would like to say Thank You to all who participated in this year’s 10th annual Vocational Luncheon event on Oct. 25th 2012 and to all who wanted to participate but were unable to. It was a blast! And I’m not just saying that because I was the MC.

First I would like to give a special thank you to the entire steering committee; Janice McKinney, Joyce Brown, Barbara Erby, Marion Lawton, Betsy Diffederfer, Karen Oliver, Nancy Elmore, Sabrena Sheppard, Harold Nelson, Tracey Attwood, Kimberley Rayburn, Fannie Shaw, Lloyd Hale and Michelle Knight Cooper. This is the committee responsible for putting together such a delightful event.

As we all know, the vocational services of CDCMHC specialize in getting people back to work but it is events like this that let you know the efforts going into the process. This luncheon had networking all over it. Representatives from Goodwill, Beacon Hospice, Family Services, the Naval Weapon station, Y&R Development, The IPS State Director( Mental Health and SCVRD) and SC Works were all present; and that’s just to name a few. The image of recovery was present in the room. Furthermore there were several students of vocational services who took a stand to say “Recovery is ours.” Amazement was mines when I saw the numbers of students of IPS indulging in the entrepreneurial side of employment. The vendors were in the house displaying their work, talent and independence. The words of Cheryl and Petica was breath taking as they shared their recovery stories.

The State President and CEO of Goodwill Industries Robert Smith, shared a few words, which was great because the vocational team and goodwill have a longstanding relationship that seems to get better each year. Guest speaker Cassandra Jamison, SC Works Site manager, shared a thorough explanation of services provided in the arena of SC Works. This is a powerful resource when seeking competitive employment. Joyce Brown gave a BRIEF synopsis of CDCMHC IPS program and the journey of the last 10 years. Our very own Dr. Christie was in the mix, sharing his understanding that recovery can be a tough but workable task. Pulling up the rear was our Executive Director Debbie Blalock supporting the students of IPS and the work going into getting folks back to employment.

If I could use one word to describe this event it would be “Elegance.” Everyone showed up Sunday Sharp or dressed in their best threads and the scenery was immaculate. There was great food, great people and great information to be shared this year. If you missed this you missed a treat, but don’t fret, we’re going to do it again next year. However, if you weren’t present, you missed the Tenth Annual; that my friends happens only once in a lifetime.

Remember: “Recovery isn’t a process for those who wish for it; recovery happens for those who work for it.”-Lloyd Hale

Peace!
 

DORCHESTER MENTAL HEALTH CLINIC LAUDS COMMUNITY PARTNERS

SUMMERVILLE, SC – November 5, 2012 – Community businesses and individuals were lauded by Dorchester Community Mental Health Clinic on Friday, November 2nd, at an appreciation breakfast recognizing their outreach and support in the past year.

Representatives of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, The Association for the Blind, Barbara Fitzgerald, Bethany United Methodist Church, Boland Pharmacy, Dorchester Vocational Rehabilitation, HELP of Summerville, Goodwill Industries, James Family Chiropractic, Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church, National Alliance on Mental Illness, Jim Mueller, One Main Financial, Publix Supermarkets, Salvation Army, and Wencharles I and Summerville Mayor Bill Collins were all invited to the sit-down breakfast.

Dorchester clinic director Steve Miller spoke on the structure of the South Carolina Department of Mental Health and how it serves the community. He followed up by demonstrating how specific donations increase the quality of clients’ lives and assist recovery. Guests enjoyed a multi-media thank-you presentation, along with a gourmet breakfast cooked and served by DMH staff. Each received a personalized appreciation award for partnering with the Dorchester Mental Health Clinic to better the lives of Dorchester County clients. The Dorchester Mental Health Clinic is a part of the Charleston/Dorchester Mental Center Center.

ANNUAL NAMI CHRISTMAS PARTY

Join us on Monday, December 10, 2012 at the Charleston Clinic of the Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center. We encourage all families, friends, and loved ones to come and support this great organization – NAMI.

The event is being held at the Charleston Clinic (2100 Charlie Hall Blvd., Charleston, SC). Client and family member support groups will be held from 6-7pm at the clinic. Call (843) 852-4100 for more details.
 

ANNUAL CLIENT HOLIDAY PARTY

The Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center (CDMHC) is holding its annual holiday party Friday, December 7th from 12noon to 3pm at the Charleston Baptist Church. This event is sponsored by the CDMHC Board of Directors.

This is a great annual event and we’ll have updates and pictures once it takes place!
 

OUT OF THE DARKNESS WALK TO PREVENT SUICIDE

October 28, 2012
Hampton Park, Charleston, SC
2:00pm
www.outofthedarkness.org

The Out of the Darkness Walk is an incredible event that is organized and led, at a local level, by the Medical University of South Carolina’s Institute of Psychiatry (MUSC-IOP). The walk continues to grow each and every year as family, friends, and community members come to support one another and recognize those loved one’s lost to suicide.

Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center joined several organizations offering a wide variety of resources and support. It was an emotional and touching event, and we want to thank MUSC-IOP for their hard work in making this event possible for families and loved ones.

If you would like more information about Out of the Darkness please visit them at www.outofthedarkness.org.
 

10th ANNUAL EMPLOYER/EMPLOYEE LUNCHEON

October 25, 2012
The Palmetto Goodwill Administration Office Community Room
2150 Eagle Drive North Charleston, SC.
11am – 1pm

The event will recognize employers in the Tri-County area which have provided competitive employment opportunities to persons with mental illness through a partnership developed with the South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Services. The luncheon will be attended by employers, program participants, and their families. Prospective employers from the community are invited and may contact Joyce Brown at (843) 852-4100 for additional information.
 

MENTAL HEALTH & SUICIDE AWARENESS EXPO

September 8, 2012 on Marion Square in Downtown Charleston.
9am – 2pm

ANNUAL SUICIDE AWARENESS EXPO IS A TREMENDOUS SUCCESS!

This past Saturday Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center, DAODAS, Coastal Crisis Chaplaincy, The Charleston VA, MUSC, Palmetto Behavioral Health, NAMI, Life Guidance Center, 211 Hotline, College of Charleston Counseling Center, & Darkness to Light held a Suicide Prevention Expo in Marion Square.  We spoke with countless folks regarding suicide prevention.  Some folks told us their stories.  Some folks told us about their losses. Some folks asked for our help.

Each and every year we partner with other outstanding organizations in Charleston to offer support and promote awareness about the growing problem of suicide that is impacting our entire country.

Suicide is one of the leading causes of death nationally (11th overall), and it affects people of all ages, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds. In spite of it’s prevalence and devastation, people struggle to recognize signs and symptoms, and many are hesitant to find help. There are many reasons why this is the case – a family may be concerned for a loved one but fearful of intervening, or a person experiencing symptoms may not have the motivation to seek out help.

One of the primary purposes of our Annual Expo is to let people know there are a wealth of resources. We want our community to understand we are here to help and we are willing to reach out in order to help make the first step an easier one. We know there is hope for those at risk, because – quite simply – intervention works. Early identification and intervention can prevent suicides in both adults and children and assist individuals to lead happy, healthy lives.
This year we connected with hundreds of people as we worked to foster an open and honest discussion about suicide in our community. Our efforts did not go unnoticed as we earned the attention of television stations (Channels 4 and 5) whom covered the event.

Once again, we’d like to thank all those who made this event possible, and we will see you next year!

  • Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center
  • Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center
  • Palmetto Behavioral Health
  • MUSC Institute of Psychiatry
  • Life Guidance Center
  • College of Charleston
  • United Way 211 Hotline
  • Coastal Crisis Chaplaincy
  • NAMI Charleston
  • Charleston Center
  • Darkness to Light

 

TRIDENT UNITED WAY: DAY OF CARING 2012

Friday, September 7, 2012

Trident United Way held its annual Day of Caring event and provided 30 people from the Nuclear School at the Naval Weapons Station.  They washed & cleaned all of the CDMHC State Vehicles.  We would like to thank Taryn Reed, Johnny Stukes, Bill McDaniel, Queen Anderson & Valerie O’Neal for their help in making this happen.

MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS EVENT


May 19th, 2012 at the Charleston Farmers Market in Marion Square from 9am to 9pm.  The event was sponsored by the Anti-Stigma Committee and we had an incredible turn out at our booth.  The event gave us an opportunity to spread the word about mental health and many people came away with resources and a new found understanding of mental illness.

CAR WASH FUNDRAISER

May 12th, 2012 from 10am to 2pm McDonalds on 2007 Magwood Drive (Ashley Crossing Shopping Area) $5.00 minimum donation This event is being sponsored by McDonalds, Mental Health Heroes, and Ronald McDonald House.  Proceeds will go to Mental Health Heroes and Ronald McDonald House.  Stay tuned for more details!
 

DAY OF CARING VOLUNTEERS INVADE CHARLESTON DORCHESTER MHC!

By Sherri Dangerfield, Charleston/Dorchester MHC Ten years after Sept. 11, 2001, many people geared up for another amazing day of service to our community. Trident United Way’s 2011 Day of Caring was Friday, Sept. 9. On that date, 7,500 people descended on 400 projects throughout the Charleston community to help others and reflect on the values that were attacked that fateful day. While we mourn those who were lost and celebrate those who inspired us through their heroism, the Charleston/Dorchester community recommitted itself to helping those in need where possible–right here in our own community. In the 10 years since Sept. 11, 2001, 50,000 people have participated in Trident United Way’s Day of Caring, which has brought $10 million worth of labor and supplies to area non-profits. The Charleston/Dorchester Community Mental Health Center welcomed 50 volunteers from the Naval Nuclear Power Training Command to its grounds. Dressed in Day of Caring red shirts, these young men and women washed and cleaned 27 state vehicles, including the Highway to Hope RV, which is dedicated to serving those with mental illness in distant, rural communities who cannot, for a variety a reasons, get to the community clinic. One client who witnessed the volunteering reported, “We are being invaded by red tee shirts!” Another day of dedication and selflessness has passed, but the spirit of humanitarian hope continues on in memory of those who sacrificed all.
 

Keeping West Ashley Safe

Friday, October 21, 2011 SWAT team conducts training exercise at mental health facility By Warren Cobb
Managing Editor of {West Of} West Ashley’s Newspaper If you saw SWAT personnel leading people out of the Charleston/Dorchester Mental Health Center last week, don’t fear. While the events at the Charlie Hall Boulevard facility had all the trappings of a tense hostage situation, it was, thankfully, just an exercise. On Friday, Oct. 21, the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office conducted an all-day training exercise at the mental health facility, which included SWAT and hostage negotiation activities. The facility was closed to clients that day, and its personnel participated in the training. The Charleston County Sheriff’s Office SWAT Team and Crisis Negotiations Team each conduct monthly trainings, and have semi-annual training exercises with the Charleston/Dorchester Mental Health Center (CDMHC). During the exercise, several scenarios were presented and the units work together to test capabilities and strengthen Sheriff’s Office and the center employees’ ability to work together toward a successful resolution of a particular crisis. While the exercise had an air of interested excitement for onlookers, they also represented a sobering possibility for the West Ashley community. While it’s unlikely the mental health clients of the two-county area will escalate to violence, the motto of the facility, as well as the Sheriff’s Office, is “Be Prepared.” “We have a 32,000-square-foot facility,” said Debbie Blalock, executive director of the CDMHC. “I want our staff to be prepared for any scenario. I don’t want to learn about problems in the moment. The main thing for us is safety.” The CDMHC serves about 8,500 clients per year, with about 4,800 open cases on any given day. The facility also has 230 employees on site daily. (about half of what they had just five years ago before the state cut their budget.) The Charleston County Sheriff’s Office has had this working relationship with CDMHC personnel for more than 15 years. They say it’s of keen import to have a working relationship and a well-formed plan before a crisis arises, instead of trying to develop one on scene. “We have worked with (CDMHC) and their Mobile Crisis Team for 20 years,” said Charleston Sheriff Al Cannon, who said the center is also contracted to provide mental health service to the county jail. “Given our experience, we felt this is a valid and potential scenario. Cannon said they have to have such a relationship because the Sheriff’s Office is solely responsible for Emergency Protective Custody cases throughout the county, including municipal jurisdictions. “We have a special unit ready to deal with mental health, substance abuse, and often, a combination of the two,” Cannon said. “Because of that, it throws us into the mental health community unlike what other agencies have.”

Special Needs Fair

October 1, 2011 10am-2pm Marrington Plantation, Naval Weapons Station The Exceptional Family Member Program of Joint Base Charleston hosted their annual Special Needs Fair for military families who have children with special needs.  It was a day of fun, games, food, and community resources for families. Charleston Dorchester Mental Health was one of several community organizations who helped provide support for the many families of the military.  Several families were new to the area and were looking for a variety of support services for their children. It was a great event and we were proud to be able to support those families who protect our country!

Suicide Awareness Event

September 10, 2011 9am-2pm Marion Square Park Charleston, SC On Saturday, September 10th, 2011 the Charleston Dorchester Mental Health center joined forces with fifteen Charleston and Dorchester County organizations to share resources, offer support, and improve our communities awareness and understanding of suicide. Suicide remains a growing problem that impacts the lives of people across the United States.  It is one of the leading causes of death nationally (11th overall), it is the third leading cause of death for ages 15-24, and second among college-age youth.  Our overarching goal for this event was to reduce the stigma of suicide and mental health issues (e.g., depression, anxiety) so our community can be better prepared to identify risk factors and understand treatment options that will go a long way to ensure the safety of those who are at risk. Early identification and intervention can prevent suicides in both adults and children, and we are fortunate to have a wide array of incredible resources in Charleston and Dorchester County. September 10th was Suicide Awareness Day across the country, and the event was met with much success, having grown the number of organizations from eight in 2010 to fifteen in 2011!  We had a diverse group of organizations from the United Way’s 211 hotline to the Medical University of South Carolina to several private practice clinicians, all dedicated to helping support our community around an issue that is too often ignored. The event, on Marion Square in downtown Charleston, was a big success as we were greeted by people throughout the day who came to ask questions and find support. We want to thank everyone who participated and visited us, and we will see you again next year!     Participating Organizations

  • Charleston Dorchester Mental Health Center
  • The Charleston Veteran’s Administration Medical Center
  • MUSC Institute of Psychiatry
  • Palmetto Behavioral Health
  • 211 Trident United Way
  • The Charleston Center
  • Coastal Crisis Chaplaincy
  • College of Charleston Counseling Center
  • Crittenton Programs of South Carolina
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy of Charleston
  • MUSC College of Nursing
  • Oasis Christian Counseling
  • Seasons Therapy
  • Trident Technical College
  • NAMI-SC

Upcoming Events

2017 Lowcountry Mh Conference!!
July 27-28, 2017
www.lowcountrymhconference.com

Art of Recovery Reception!
May 27, 2017 4pm - 6pm
Upper Lance Hall
The Circular Congregation Church
Food and Beverages Served
Live Entertainment
Free of Charge

CARF Accredited

Contact Us

Charleston Clinic: (843) 852-4100
Dorchester Clinic: (843) 873-5063
Business Office: (843) 212-8980
TTY: (800) 647-2066
Videophone: (803)807-2701