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SAMHSA Awards $17.8 Million for Mental Health Awareness Training for People Who Interact with Those Experiencing Mental Health Disorders

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The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has released 145 grant awards totaling $17.8 million to help communities increase mental health awareness among individuals who interact with people who are experiencing or exhibiting symptoms of a mental health disorder and refer them to appropriate services. Each grant recipient will receive up to $125,000 for the first year of this five-year grant program.

“Many Americans are coping with mental health issues, which have been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and recent natural disasters,” said Miriam E. Delphin-Rittmon, Ph.D., the U.S. Health and Human Services Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use and the leader of SAMHSA. “Training programs that show how to reach out and interact appropriately with those in need are big steps toward improving the mental health of the Nation at both individual and community levels.”

The Mental Health Awareness Training grant program will train school personnel, emergency first responders, law enforcement, veterans, armed services members and their families to recognize the signs and symptoms of mental health disorders, particularly serious mental illness and/or serious emotional disturbances, to respond safely and appropriately. Participants will also learn about the available resources in their community that they might share with those individuals with whom they interact.

View a list of Mental Health Awareness Training grant recipients.

To find treatment options for mental health disorders, call SAMHSA’s 24/7 National Helpline at 800-662-HELP (4357) or visit

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The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is the agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that leads public health efforts to advance the behavioral health of the nation. SAMHSA’s mission is to lead public health and service delivery efforts that promote mental health, prevent substance misuse, and provide treatments and supports to foster recovery while ensuring equitable access and better outcomes.

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