The Mental Health Association of the Southern Tier (MHAST) is a private, non-profit organization devoted to improving mental health and wellness in the surrounding community. It is one of the oldest continuously operating Mental Health Associations in New York State and is one of 300 Mental Health Associations nationwide. MHAST is dedicated to enhancing the lives of every single community member by improving their mental health and wellness. They help community residents and their families find the correct mental health services and professionals to create partnerships, gain awareness, and start the conversation about the stigma of mental illness.
MHAST’s goals are achieved through advocacy services, educational presentations, prevention programs, and information and resource referrals. Their mission is to enhance the lives of all residents in their community by improving the quality of mental health and wellness through advocacy, education, and support. Mental health affects more people then we think. 1 in 4 American families are affected by a mental illness each year. It is estimated that over 27 million adults and 7.5 million children have been diagnosed with mental illness, outnumbering those diagnosed with cancer and heart and lunch disease combined.
There are many ways to get involved and help generate awareness about mental health and wellness. You can attend, sponsor, or donate to one of MHAST’s fundraisers—several are held throughout the year like the “Men Who Cook” amateur chef competition. There are also numerous opportunities to volunteer your time. Helping with fundraising events or assisting with administration is one way to get involved in this community based organization. Donations are always appreciated. For more information about mental health and wellness or how to get involved, visit www.yourmha.com.