In 2010, a group of concerned individuals in the Jewish community began a frank conversation about mental illness, suicide and our community’s response to grief and loss.
The result was the formation of the Jewish Community Mental Health Coalition made up of Jewish Family Services, the Rabbinical Association of Greater Kansas City, and a dedicated group of volunteers.
The Coalition’s campaign to reduce the stigma of mental illness was launched in September 2013, but interest quickly grew beyond the Jewish community. In May 2014, more than a dozen community organizations came together to build on what started in the Jewish community by creating the Greater Kansas City Mental Health Coalition (GKCMHC). This Coalition, now made up of 25 partner organizations under the leadership of Jewish Family Services, pools resources and expertise to reduce the stigma of mental illness throughout the metro area.
The Greater Kansas City Mental Health Coalition wants to start a conversation in our community. It is our hope that the reduction of stigma associated with mental illness will follow a similar reduction of stigma that occurred with cancer in the 1960s and 1970s and with AIDS/HIV in the 1990s.