Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

Local News

March 12, 2013

Laughing for the Health of It

MHAHC prepares for upcoming fundraiser


If laughter truly is the best medicine, Mental Health America Hendricks County is offering a prescription.

The agency is preparing for a new fundraiser called “Laughing for the Health of it.”

Tammi Jessup serves as executive director for the non-profit organization based in Avon.

“We look at our county to see how we can serve those with mental illness and to promote overall good mental health in the community,” Jessup said.

“One in four people will have a diagnosable mental health issue during his or her lifetime.

It’s important to be comfortable when talking about mental health.”

She said the recent shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., once again brought up the issue of mental illness.

“It’s important for people to know that only a very small percentage of mentally ill people act out in any kind of violent way,” Jessup said.

“The mentally ill are more likely to be a victim of violence than to perpetrate a violent act.”

She said treating a mental condition is just like treating a medical condition.

“Treating earlier is always better,” she said. “The longer it goes untreated, the worse it gets.”

MHAHC has a referral system for those in need of services.

“We have an extensive list of therapists,” Jessup said. “We also do a lot of education.”

She said the organization serves about 6,000 children a year through its youth programming.

“We serve children in preschool through high school,” she said. “We also do a parental education program called, ‘Active Parent.’”

MHAHC also helps organize several support and socialization groups for the community.

“We also do things for individuals in nursing homes,” Jessup said.

“At Christmas time, every person living in a nursing home in Hendricks County receives a gift from us. These are people who may otherwise be forgotten.”

The program’s Youth Advisory Board focuses on preventing and educating people about suicide, self injurious behaviors, and eating disorders.

“The Youth Advisory Board hosts a concert every year,” Jessup said.

“Between each band, a person will speak. This past year, it was very powerful. We had parents who had lost a child to suicide speak.”

The Kids on the Block is a puppet program that has been around since the 1970s. The puppets can address a  range of topics for local youth. Schools, churches, and just about any organization that deals with children can book the Kids on the Block to perform.

The youth also promote the GPR program.

“And yes, it sounds like CPR on purpose,” Jessup said. “It stands for Question, Persuade, Refer. It is like CPR. Anyone can learn and help stop suicide. We provide them with information so they can identify potential symptoms of suicide.”

MHAHC also partners with several other organizations to help provide community programs such as Stewards of Children, Hendricks County Kids Fair, Family Fun Day, and more.

“We can also help people with mental illness who may be having trouble with an agency,” Jessup said. “We can go with them to an appointment and help speak for them. We are always more than willing to do that.”

Mental Health America was once called the Mental Health Association. It changed its name and affiliations several years ago.

“Now every county does it differently,” Jessup said. “We’ve found it’s easier for us to know what needs to be done locally.”

MHAHC is also one of four United Way agencies headquarted in Hendricks County.

“We also own our building,” Jessup said. “The board held a capitol fund drive and was able to purchase this building.”

Those who donated to the campaign were honored with a leaf on a tree painted in the organization’s office.

“We rent the other side of our building to a dentist,” Jessup said. “All of our building expenses are covered by the rent we receive. So all the funds we raise go to the programs we do for the community.”

Other income sources including fund raising and fees for the Our Child Our Divorce program.

“Our wreath sales is one of our major fundraisers,” Jessup said.

“We are always looking for other ways to raise funds.”

“Laughing for the Health of It” will run from 6 to 9 p.m. April 20 at the Avon-Washington Township Park Pavilion. It will include a dinner catered by Stone Creek Catering.

“Then we will have a comedy show with at least three comedians who have agreed to perform,” Jessup said. “We will have one headliner and a few opening acts.”

There will also be a silent auction. “The funds raised will go to our general operating funds,” she said.

“It will also go to fund our programs. It should be a very fun night.”

The Mental Health America Hendricks County office is at 75 Queensway Drive, Suite A, Avon. For more information, call 272-0027.

Text Only
Local News
  • Golfing for a great cause CLAYTON — The Wings of Golf outing, which benefits the United Way of Hendricks County, is coming back for its 11th year later this month. The outing, which is presented by Visit Hendricks County, is Aug. 13 at Deer Creek Golf Club, 7143 S. S.R. 39, C

    August 1, 2014

  • Wine and Cheese Festival comes to Plainfield in September PLAINFIELD—Friends of the Plainfield Library will be hosting their annual ‘Twilight on Stafford Wine and Cheese Festival’ from 7 to 9 p.m. on Sept. 13 at the Plainfield Guilford Township Public Library. Once a year, the FOL brings in Chateau Thomas W

    July 31, 2014

  • The Piano Guys to appear in Indianapolis What do you get when you mix up a marketing genius that does video, a studio engineer that writes music, a pianist that had a successful solo career, and a cellist that does pretty much everything? The Piano Guys: a meeting of “guys” with the same in

    July 31, 2014

  • HCF 7-30 news tournament pic 1 Shooting sports tourney brings in big winners DANVILLE — The second annual Hendricks County 4-H Shooting Sports tournament in archery, air rifle and air pistol took place during the Hendricks County 4-H Fair and the results were recently announced.There were more than120 participates sharing the

    July 31, 2014 2 Photos

  • Sheltering Wings offers Life Skills classes DANVILLE — Sheltering Wings has a Life Skills program that focuses on helping women and children develop and grow.Sheltering Wings is a shelter for women and their dependent children who have escaped from a domestic violence situation.The facility of

    July 31, 2014

  • HCF 8-2 news officers pic 1 Danville swears in two officers DANVILLE—Jeff Slayback and Daniel Birt were sworn in as part-time Danville Police Officers at the Hendricks County Courthouse Thursday. Slayback, originally from Franklin, just graduated from the University of Indianapolis and finished the academy th

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gospel bluegrass concert to be at Plainfield Christian Church For the ninth consecutive year, the Plainfield Christian Church is sponsoring its annual free Bluegrass and Southern Gospel Music Concert on Aug. 3.This is a part of the Christian Outreach Ministry.“The main purpose of this concert is to get non-chur

    July 31, 2014

  • Area youth to perform 'Les Miserables' The Biz Academy of Musical Theatre will present a concert version of “Les Miserables” School Edition at 7 p.m. July 31, Aug.1 and Aug. 2 at Harmony Baptist Church in Avon.Victor Hugo’s “Les Miserables” is one of literature’s most compelling stories a

    July 31, 2014

  • BMV to begin offering tests in languages other than English |Don Snemis, commissioner of the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV), has announced that the BMV will for the first time begin offering automated Operator Knowledge Tests in foreign languages. “In response to numerous requests from businesses, uni

    July 30, 2014

  • Hamilton scolds Congress for national security failures |INDIANAPOLIS — Retired Congressman Lee Hamilton has warned of the perils of political ideology, calling the body where he spent 34 years “noxiously partisan.” Now, he worries the divide is downright dangerous. A co-chairman of the 9/11 Commission, H

    July 30, 2014

House Ads
Hendricks County Marquee
Email News Sign Up
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter

Should the government continue to use military bases to house illegal immigrant children?

     View Results
AP Video
Renewed Violence Taking Toll on Gaza Residents 2 Americans Detained in North Korea Seek Help US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Tunisia Closes Borders With Libya Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Must Read