With ongoing research on health continuing to indicate the importance of integration of physical and mental health, Community Mental Health Center, Inc., Lawrenceburg, is working to develop a “wellness approach” for staff members, consumers and communities.
“CMHC has a goal of promoting wellness and helping to build a culture of wellness in which individuals, families and communities strive for and achieve overall well-being,” said Tom Talbot, CMHC Executive Director.
“We are well-positioned to be at the forefront of promoting wellness. Our mission statement – ‘Partnering For Wellness: Healthy Mind. Healthy Body. Healthy Life’ – reflects an enhanced focus on a wellness approach,” said Talbot.
One of the primary sources of CMHC’s philosophy regarding wellness is the U. S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), which has developed a meaningful definition of wellness and how it can affect the lives of individuals and communities. According to SAMHSA, “wellness refers to overall well-being and involves having a healthy body and living environment, active involvement in satisfying work and play, purpose in life, joyful relationships, and happiness.”
SAMHSA’s wellness approach supports embracing their Eight Dimensions of Wellness, which are: Emotional, Environmental, Financial, Intellectual, Occupational, Physical, Social and Spiritual. Attention to each of these dimensions helps individuals achieve longevity and improved quality of life.
“We want to help create a new wave of thought on wellness by focusing on a comprehensive, integrated and holistic approach for individuals and communities. For decades, health has been addressed in three distinct aspects: physical, mental and social. Today, CMHC wants to re-direct the stream of conversation to re-define true ‘wellness’ as the integration of these important dimensions,” said Talbot.
For several months now, CMHC has had a Health & Wellness Committee working with staff members and consumers to promote SAMHSA’s Eight Dimensions of Wellness as an introduction to wellness and to educate staff members and consumers about the importance of wellness. Now, CMHC is ready to launch a wellness initiative with which the agency is hoping to have community impact.
“As we approach the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of our first offices in Lawrenceburg, we realize we also are in the midst of a wonderful opportunity to reach out to our communities to promote understanding of wellness and to ask everyone to join us in working toward a future that embraces a focus on wellness for healthy living,” said Talbot.
“We also have been working with our Board members to help them understand wellness and what it can mean to our communities. Some of the partnerships we already have established in our service area in Southeastern Indiana and in Greater Cincinnati will provide us with resources to reach out and touch everyone. We also thank our local media for their support in publishing and broadcasting our media releases on a regular basis. They also are key allies in this campaign,” said Talbot.
As CMHC is the primary provider of behavioral health services in Southeastern Indiana, the agency understands its primary focus is on behavioral health services. Wellness is central to recovery from mental, emotional and behavioral health conditions. The path to wellness is different for each individual and community, but all paths generally include some of the same essential elements.
During the coming months this year, CMHC will provide our local media sources with releases regarding SAMHSA’s Eight Dimensions of Wellness on a regular basis. CMHC invites everyone to become familiar with the Eight Dimensions and to consider how these dimensions affect your lives and those of your loved ones and friends.
“We hope that by focusing on wellness, we can help build healthier communities for the future,” said Talbot.
CMHC provides comprehensive behavioral health services in Dearborn, Franklin, Ohio, Ripley and Switzerland counties. For more information about our services, or for information about an office near you, please phone (812) 537-1302 or visit our website at www.cmhcinc.org.