DHW podcast features interviews about Mental Health Month

May 10, 2024
Dustin Lapray, Division of Behavioral Health

May is mental health awareness month. To note the occasion, the “Idaho Behavioral Health Authority Podcast” interviewed three guests for its latest episode, each with their own experience and expertise to help Idahoans.

Hosts Jeremy Storton and Dustin Lapray from the Division of Behavioral Health communications and training unit met individually with the guests:

  • Alejandra Del Toro, a program manager at Empower Idaho, joined the podcast to talk about the work her organization does to promote awareness in Idaho each May. Empower Idaho releases an annual toolkit in English and Spanish, complete with an online store, an art exhibition, official graphics, and more. It’s a really neat kit.
  • Brenda Wilson is the Executive Director of FYIdaho, an organization that focuses on youth and teen mental health in the Gem State. The programs Wilson discusses in the podcast include in-person and virtual options for modern kids to express their frustrations, needs, and to get real help from qualified professionals. 
  • Laura Cardoza is an adjunct professor at The College of Idaho in the field of health and human performance. She has a background in exercise science, fitness, yoga, and life. She offered the podcast a top-10 list of suggestions for better mental well-being. While the other guests focused on adult and children’s mental health, Laura opened the door to everyone else, helping listeners stretch their minds and bodies toward better mental fitness.

Despite the many challenges Idahoans endure to treat a variety of mental illnesses, there is still cause to celebrate this May. Mental fitness can help everyone. Treatment can help those who seek it. Although many mental illnesses have no cure, the working professionals of Idaho are here to help the vulnerable find treatment when they need it.

This May, consider the most vulnerable. Consider your friends and family who may be struggling behind the scenes. Ask them about it. Be bold. Offer your time and your care. If you or a family member, a friend or a stranger needs help, reach out to the Department of Health and Welfare.

Call the Idaho Careline by dialing 2-1-1 for information about services, insurance coverage, and more.
If you are in crisis, or want to learn what that means, call or text 988.

This May, wear green proudly to raise awareness about mental health!

Listen to the podcast series, now available on YouTube and Spotify,  or visit the home page for the “Idaho Behavioral Health Authority.”

Dustin Lapray is a public involvement officer with the Division of Behavioral health at DHW.
The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare is dedicated to strengthening the health, safety, and independence of Idahoans. Learn more at healthandwelfare.idaho.gov.

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