HOLYOKE — MiraVista Behavioral Health Center continued its observances marking May as Mental Health Awareness Month with a flag raising held the morning of May 9. Proclamations recognizing MiraVista’s work to address mental wellness were presented by the offices of Holyoke Mayor Joshua Garcia and state Sen. John Velis.
“Green is the color for the month, as it is among the symbols for renewal and hope, and we are asking staff to wear green for the day,” said Kimberley Lee, MiraVista’s chief of Creative Strategy and Development. “Our flag is green and white with an image of a green ribbon to encourage everyone to understand how important being mentally healthy is and to encourage anyone in poor mental health to know they are not alone and to seek treatment.”
The psychiatric hospital delivers care to both adults and adolescents and is in the process of adding 20 additional beds to its units and expanding outpatient services to include mental-health counseling.
During the month, MiraVista has partnered with Holyoke Public Library and Springfield Central Library to promote reading for mental health with special displays at both locations.
It is illuminating its façade as well during the month and encouraging area civic leaders to wear green, particularly during Mental Health Awareness Week, which begins May 15, to model that mental health is part of everyone’s health and that everyone needs to pay attention to it to stay emotionally resilient and healthy. Studies have shown that support for someone dealing with a severe mental illness is key in helping them stay in treatment and not feel isolated.