Category Archives: Behavioral Health and Recovery Services

1/27 & 1/31- Half Moon Bay Victim Remembrance

The Archdiocese of San Francisco, Coastside Interfaith Community, City of Half Moon Bay, County of San Mateo, Chamber of Commerce, and other community-based organizations, have organized a few victim remembrance events that we’d like to announce to you now.

• This Friday, January 27, at 5:00 p.m., please join us at Mac Dutra Plaza, 504 Main Street, for a candlelight vigil ceremony to honor, remember, and pay tribute to the victims of the mass shooting incident. The event’s program will include song and prayer. Spanish, Mandarin, and ASL interpretation will be provided.

• On Tuesday, January 31, at 4:00 p.m., Our Lady of the Pillar Church and the Coastside Interfaith Community will host a memorial service at the Boys & Girl Club Event Center at 530 Kelly Avenue. This service will include prayers and healing words from the interfaith leaders in remembrance of the victims and hope for the future. Spanish, Mandarin, and ASL interpretation will be provided.

• Immediately following the memorial service, a candlelight processional walk will occur down Kelly Avenue, past the Mac Dutra Plaza memorial, and down Main Street to the I.D.E.S. Hall.

• At 6:00 p.m., Tuesday, January 31, at the I.D.E.S. Hall, 735 Main Street, the City, County, and Chamber of Commerce would like to invite you to a Community Gathering for dinner and fellowship as we begin to move forward as a community. If you’d like to join us for the gathering, please register here (https://www.eventbrite.com/…/victim-remembrance…) so we can ensure we are able to host everyone appropriately.

The memorial at Mac Dutra Plaza continues to be available for anyone who wishes to grieve separately or on their own. This event has affected all of us differently. Mental Health continues to be a struggle for many, and we want to remind everyone, especially during this time, that there are resources available. The City’s CARES Team is available 7 days a week, 8:00 a.m. through 6:30 p.m. by calling 988 or 650-713-5467 and the County of San Mateo Crisis Response Team is also available to provide mental health resources by calling 800-686-0101.

Special thanks to Julio Escobar from the Archdiocese of San Francisco – Restorative Justice Ministry for planning and organizing these events for the victims and families. In addition to the events listed above, the Archdiocese will be holding a site blessing ceremony with Archbishop Cordileone on Friday afternoon.

If you or a loved one are in need of mental health support visit here.

1/18 – Heart & Soul Lunar New Year Open House

Join Heart & Soul in celebrating the Lunar New Year! Learn about their programs, meet their team member, and gather in community. Their Lunar New Year open house is Wednesday, January 18th from 3pm to 6pm at 1633 Old Bayshore Hwy, Suite 258, Burlingame.

Come hear from featured guest speaker, Erica Horn, Executive Director of California Clubhouse. The open house will also include a door prize raffle. Will the Year of the Rabbit bring you look? You may be a winner!

For more info visit heartandsoulinc.org or email info@heartandsoulinc.org.

2/11 – AACI Presents: A Black History Month Celebration

Please join San Mateo County’s African American Community Initiative (AACI) for their 2023 Black History Month Celebration. The event is on Saturday, February 11th, 2023 from 10am to 2pm. In-person location is at Cooley Landing Center (2100 Bay Rd, East Palo Alto, CA 94303).

This event will be hybrid with an in-person limited capacity of 75 people. Registration is first come first serve, and you don’t want to miss out!

Scheduled presentations and activities include Black Mental Health, COVID-19 and Health Care in the Black Community, raffle prizes, live musical performances and poetry.

RSVP for the event here.

If you are interested to volunteer for set up, clean up, ushering, door monitoring, etc, please email dpennix@smcgov.org.

The mission of the African American Community Initiative is to become a known resource for African American Community members facing challenges with finding and utilizing mental health services, while addressing inequalities faced by African Americans in our county. Our vision is to build a community driven support system for reducing mental health and substance use treatment disparities, and the stigma of mental illness. Learn more about AACI here

1/27 – Pioneer Court Open House

HealthRIGHT 360’s Pioneer Court is celebrating its grand reopening by holding an open house event.

Pioneer Court has served San Mateo since 2015 and has become a staple in the behavioral health community. Despite the unprecedented pandemic, their doors stayed open for anyone who needed their services. Today, they are proud to be a beacon of hope and continue serving the community youth and adults virtually and in person. The team at Pioneer Court looks forward to welcoming attendees to the grand reopening of its facility.

The event will be on Friday, 1/27/23 from 2pm to 5pm. Look forward to guest speakers, raffle prizes, and learning more about their youth and adult programs. More details are located on the flyer pdf below. Looking forward to seeing you all there!

BHRS Director’s Update – January 2023

Please see the latest issue of the Director’s Update from BHRS Interim Director, Lisa Mancini. 

 Topics include:

  • Peer Support Certification Update
  • Employee Service Awards
  • Farewell OCFA Director, Claudia Saggese
  • Contractors’ Association Spotlight: Heart and Soul
  • Intergenerational Trauma in the Latinx Community
  • CalAIM Corner: CalAIM Implementation Glitches

Past issues can be found here.

Latino Collaborative Co-Chair Honored with Extra Mile Award at Women in County Government

Pictured left to right: Yolanda Ramirez, Claudia Saggese, Melissa Ibarra, Sylvia Tang, Gloria Gonzalez, Maria Lorente-Foresti, Kristie Lui, Yahaira Ortega, Twila Dependahl, Regina Moreno

Each year our San Mateo County Women in County Government recognizes exceptional women working in our government departments. This year numerous nominations were received to honor the outstanding dedication and service women have made to serve our communities.

We would like to congratulate Gloria Cahuich Gonzalez, Co-Chair of Behavioral Health & Recovery Services’ Latino Collaborative and Community Program Specialist II with SMC Public Health, Policy and Planning. Gloria has shown her passion, commitment and compassion to our Latinx community in her work to lead two Sana Sana Colita de Rana Events and provide resources and supports to our marginalized communities. The work she and other nominees below have done emphasizes the importance of creating a positive impact in San Mateo communities by implementing a racial equity lens in the work we do.

Congratulations to all other BHRS nominees:
Rookie of the Year:
Dori Bailey, MD., BHRS Adult Psychiatrist

Development Champion:
Chummy Sevilla, BHRS Clinical Services Manager II

Public Service/Extra Mile:
Barbara Weissman, MD, BHRS Adult Psychiatrist
Linda Hildreth, BHRS Supervising Mental Health Clinician
Maria Lorente-Foresti, Ph.D., BHRS Director Office of Diversity and Equity
Tennille Tucker, BHRS Supervising Mental Health Clinician
Yolanda Ramirez, BHRS Senior Community Program Specialist

Please join us in congratulating these amazing women that make a difference everyday for our workforce and those we serve.

Written by Kristie Lui and Maria Lorente-Foresti, Ph.D., BHRS Office of Diversity and Equity

1/17 – Deadline to Submit George Culores Hall of Fame Nomination

2016 Recipient of the George Culores Hall of Fame Award, Yolanda Ramirez, receiving the award from MHSARC member, Rocio Cornejo

Every year the Behavioral Health Commission (BHC) honors individuals who have found their way to a path of wellness and recovery from mental illness and have been active in the consumer movement to better the lives of others in San Mateo County.

The George Culores Hall of Fame Award recognizes consumer/clients who have made contributions to better the lives of other consumer/clients; shown leadership in the consumer movement or have a personal journey of recovery that inspires and gives hope to others.  

Deadline to submit nomination is on Tuesday, January 17th, 2023.

Learn more about the George Culores Hall of Fame Award here.

Serenity House CRT Program Reopens

We are pleased to announce that the Serenity House Crisis Residential Treatment (CRT) program opened on Monday, October 3!

Serenity House is a 13-bed CRT program serving adults age 18+ with a diagnosis of mental illness, including those with co-occurring substance use disorders. In partnership with San Mateo County, the CRT will provide care to individuals aged 18 and above, 24-hours a day, 7 days per week.

The CRT will help people find relief from distress, maintain stability, and emphasize choice-making skills and harm-reduction techniques. Prior to arriving at the program, all referrals should call 650-539-0340 to access services.

Referrals may be generated through self-referral, local law enforcement, emergency responders, or being diverted from psychiatric emergency departments.

Learn more here.

Samoan Solutions 12th Annual Turkey Trot: Highlighting Community Care

As we kick off the Holiday Season, I am reminded of the importance of community and how I was recently surrounded by the Pacific Islander community.  As a member of the BHRS Office of Diversity & Equity Pacific Islander Initiative, I did my first 5K at Samoan Solutions 12th Annual Turkey Trot for Charity at the Brisbane Marina in South San Francisco.  Despite the bone chilling morning air, many made their health a priority by running and walking the 5K event.

This year’s beneficiary was Soup 4 the Soul which is a family led effort to provide for the needs of San Francisco’s homeless community. 2022 is Soup 4 the Soul’s 8th year of offering hot soup and necessities for those less fortunate during the Thanksgiving holiday. Samoan Solutions is giving a portion of this year’s proceeds to support this local effort of paying it forward.

To learn more about our Health Equity Initiative, visit here.
To learn more about our Pacific Islander Initiative, visit here.

Written by Twila Dependahl (she/her), BHRS Office of Diversity & Equity

12/21- Heart & Soul Holiday Open House

Join Heart & Soul in celebrating the holiday season! Learn about their programs, meet their team member, and gather in community. Their holiday open house is Wednesday, December 21st from 3pm to 6pm at 1633 Old Bayshore Hwy, Suite 258, Burlingame.

Heart & Soul is also offering an in-person Holiday Wellness Project: 2023 Vision Boards. How will you nurture your wellness in 2023? Vision boards are creative tools to hep you focus your awareness and intentions for the new year. Materials will be provided to create a 15 x 11 inch Vision Board. An image bank of hundreds of clippings, quotes and pictures will be available for you to use in your collage. If you have favorite imagery or meaningful wording to incorporate in your Vision Board, bring them with you!

For more info visit heartandsoulinc.org or email info@heartandsoulinc.org.

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