Dear Community of Hope,
This month, we published the final episode of Moving America’s Soul on Suicide. Our exceptional film director, Justin Shelby, will now stitch these moving stories into a documentary film. Silouan, Tonja, and Kevin will join us on stage at NATCON23 in Los Angeles for a Thought Leader session, during which we will preview clips and revisit each of their journeys as suicide attempt survivors.
Along the way, we filmed in nine states from coast to coast. We began with Silouan’s idea that “Anyone Can Get Broken” and ended with Ally’s inspiring example that “Anyone Can Come Back.” Justin, Dr. Thomas Joiner, and I are profoundly grateful to all who shared their stories of suffering, courage, and the way forward. “U Matter” was the title of Reina’s episode, and this concepts seems to hit the heart as we contemplate a title for the final film.
This project wouldn’t exist without the support of our national partners. I remember the extraordinary conversations with Colleen Carr as the National Action Alliance birthed the concept. Thanks to the Action Alliance and Vibrant Emotional Health, as well as Georgia DBHDD, Arizona AHCCCS, and the New York State OMH and SPC, each of whom sponsored three episodes. These alliances were key in this new era of state and federal partnership around 988!
I am also forever indebted to Dr. Thomas Joiner, who joined me as co-producer. His monumental work and personal stories shaped so much of my passion for this work.
David W. Covington, LPC, MBA
CEO & President, RI International
Visit me at DavidwCovington.com/storyteller.
Fearleass – Ep 09 | moving america’s soul on suicide
Today Ally is a Spartan Ultra winner who helps women gain confidence through better fitness and nutrition. She’s a mother and her face is tattooed on the arm of her soul-mate husband. A decade ago her parents hoped their 15 year old would survive, and then, that she would find her way forward.
Moving america’s soul on suicide at natcon23
Suicide touches all of us. It can happen to anyone and the lives of those who have come close give us a tremendous look inside. Hear stories of intolerable pain and the possibility of hope and recovery. Join us at NATCON23 on May 1st at 2:45 PM for this Thought Leader session and hear from David Covington, Kevin Berthia, Tonja Myles, Silouan Green, and Justin Shelby.
ribbon cutting for montgomery county center
RI International was thrilled to welcome members of the community for the ribbon-cutting event for the Montgomery County Behavioral Health Emergency Service Center in Dayton, Ohio. Speakers for the event included Governor DeWine, OhioMHAS Director Lori Criss, RI’s own David Covington, and other state and local officials. Read more from local news, WHIO.
Strong Talk Guest dr. shoyinka
In recognition of Minority Health month, Vic Armstrong and his guest, Dr. Sosunmolu Shoyinka discuss the biggest challenges and opportunities in providing effective mental health care in Black and Brown communities. See the Strong Talk episode or listen on buzzsprout.
The BHL Platform (988 & crisis care software)
In 2006, BHL launched the first statewide crisis software system that would set the “care traffic control” standard. In 2021, Henry Wengier and team started afresh to catapult Virginia forward to a SAAS Enterprise Product which will shape Crisis Now systems into the future. Hosted in a Microsoft Azure data center, The BHL Platform is a native cloud SaaS product built to take advantage of the latest technologies and security advances cloud computing provides. This SOC2 Type2 Certified solution is highly available and extensible and auto-scales to meet the changing needs of its users.
But, what’s more, Dr. Chuck Browning and Dr. John Draper are driving The Platform to go beyond aligning to 988 and SMHSA guidelines and incorporating feedback from leading experts in other Behavioral Health areas like Homicidal Ideation, Substance Use, and other Mental Health crisis. Watch on YouTube. Learn more at behavioralhealthlink.com.
construction begins for franklin county center
More than 100 community partners gathered in February to celebrate the ceremonial groundbreaking of the Franklin County Crisis Care Center in Ohio, and construction has begun in earnest. Speakers shared what this facility will mean to the community and the hope it will provide to those in crisis once its doors open in 2025. Read more from ADAMH.
lgbtq+ populations and 988
The goal of 988 is to provide access and support to ANYONE, any where, any time. However, as Angela Weeks of the Center of Excellence for LGBTQ+ Behavioral Health Equity states, “LGBTQ+ people experience unique vulnerabilities directly related to hostility and violence and rejecting behaviors“. Watch Angela in the 988 Crisis Jam or visit Talk.CrisisNow.com.
new five lanes youtube channel
Earlier this year, healthcare leaders from Google and YouTube joined the 988 Crisis Jam and we were able to pick their brains about our health content videos. We’ve completely revamped our channel thanks to their insights, and we hope you’ll visit, like and subscribe! Visit us at Bit.ly/FiveLanes.
Mackenzie scott foundation giving
Prior to 2020, RI had no material history with philanthropic support, but matching funds from the Ballmer Foundation and in-kind support from the McKinsey Health Institute opened the door. In 2022, RI received $15 million from MacKenzie Scott, simply momentous to expanding Crisis Now. In March, they launched Yield Giving, an Open Call seeking organizations advancing the voices and opportunities of those who have met with discrimination and systemic obstacles.
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