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James Plastiras Director of Public Information New York State Office of Mental Health 518-474-6540 james.plastiras@omh.ny.gov

May 16, 2023

New York State Recognizes Hudson River Program for its Efforts to Improve Children’s Mental Health

The Mental Health Association of Columbia Greene Counties Honored for its Programs that Support Children and Families

Albany, NY – New York State is honoring The Mental Health Association of Columbia and Greene Counties with the 2023 ‘What’s Great in our State’ Community/Organization Award. 


The organization helps economically disadvantaged youth make connections, build relationships and develop problem solving skills. MHA of Columbia Greene Counties has a Child Advocacy Center that provides trauma therapy and support. It also maintains a Mobile Crisis Assessment Team in addition to several other programs serving the Hudson River region. 


“The Mental Health Association of Columbia Greene Counties shows us ‘What’s Great in Our State’ through its individualized care for children experiencing behavioral and/or mental health challenges,” said New York State Office of Mental Health Commissioner Dr. Ann Sullivan. “The organization has helped numerous families learn to manage their health and improve their lives. We thank everyone involved in these programs for their commitment to children’s mental health.”  


The MHA of Columbia Greene Counties was presented with the award at the annual ‘What’s Great in our State 2023’ event on May 9.  The celebration recognizes the individuals and programs that are successfully advancing the cause of children’s mental health in New York State.  


“MHA of Columbia Greene (MHACG) is humbled and honored to be recognized for the invaluable support our array of services provides to connect children and families with care and mental wellbeing,” said David Rossetti, Executive Director of MHACG. “Our diverse programs have assisted thousands of children and families through abuse support, substance use recovery and prevention, education and socialization activities, anxiety and mental health support in the schools, family education and development, and mentoring youth for positive life experiences. We’re the bridge to wellbeing for the community, giving parents education and resources, and guiding children through life’s challenges to live life to its potential.” 


‘What’s Great in Our State’ 


The ‘What’s Great in Our State’ event was first launched in 2010 and is held during Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week, a national movement that raises awareness about the importance of children’s mental health. The event features a reading of Governor Kathy Hochul’s announcement proclaiming the week as Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week, a ceremony recognizing our honorees, and an art show featuring artwork created by children receiving services from New York State’s mental health system. 


The What’s Great in Our State Conference was especially significant this year, in light of Governor Hochul’s historic, multi-year $1-billion commitment to overhaul and strengthen the state’s continuum of mental health care.


The event is sponsored by six New York State agencies and several children’s mental health advocacy organizations: The Office of Mental Health, the Council on Children and Families, the Department of Health, the State Education Department, the Office of Children and Family Services and the Office of Addiction Services and Supports, Early Care & Learning Council, Families Together in New York State, Inc., Mental Health Association in New York State, Inc., National Alliance on Mental Illness - New York State, New York State Network for Youth Success, Prevent Child Abuse New York, Research Foundation for Mental Hygiene, Inc., and the Suicide Prevention Center of New York. 




In the attached photo: Thomas Hess, President of the Mental Health Association of Columbia and Greene Counties Board of Directors (center), accepting the Certificate of Recognition from New York State Office of Mental Health Executive Deputy Commissioner Moira W. Tashjian, MPA (left); and Sarah Kuriakose, PhD, BCBA-D, Associate Commissioner, Division of Integrated Community Services for Children and Families

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