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Burrell Behavioral Health awarded $625,000 grant for mental health education

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On average, one person dies by suicide every 16 hours in Arkansas. With new funding, Burrell Behavioral Health will be able to expand its efforts to prevent suicide by increasing understanding and recognition of warning signs, helping individuals learn the correct skills to help and support to someone who may be in a mental health crisis.

Burrell Behavioral Health has been awarded a Mental Health Awareness Training Grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). This grant will allow Burrell, one of the largest Community Mental Health Centers in the United States, to continue to provide trainings to help reduce mental health stigma through education.

The $625,000 grant will be paid out over the next five years ($125,000 per year). It will fund trainings for 2,400 individuals on how to appropriately and safely respond to those who might be struggling with their mental health.

This grant will allow Burrell to further support the nine counties that it currently serves in Northwest Arkansas: Boone, Madison, Baxter, Washington, Benton, Carroll, Marion, Searcy and Newton. With the funding, Burrell will be able to offer trainings to a catchment area of 642,000 or 21.4% of all Arkansans (American Community Survey, 2018).

Burrell Arkansas President Elizabeth Avery said these funds will be vital in helping the organization provide necessary and relevant trainings to Arkansas’ most vulnerable citizens.

“Through these proven trainings, even individuals without mental health backgrounds will be able to provide support and resources to individuals in distress. These funds will be especially helpful in light of the mental health crisis that has affected so many of us following COVID-19,” Avery said.

Grant dollars will support school personnel, community service providers, community members, emergency first responders, law enforcement, veterans, armed services members and their families, and others. These individuals and groups will receive suicide prevention and Mental Health First Aid training to recognize the warning signs of suicide, mental health or substance use crisis, and how to connect someone to resources that can help.

Burrell will reach this goal by:

  • Training community members and community partners to recognize the signs of mental health disorders and refer those in need to available resources.
  • Establishing referral pathways with our community partners to refer individuals with signs or symptoms of mental illness to appropriate services.
  • Developing new partnerships with emergency services personnel, law enforcement, fire department personnel, and veterans to identify persons with a mental disorder and employ crisis de-escalation techniques.

Contact: Lauren Headley, Public Relations Coordinator, 479-305-8226, lauren.headley@burrellcenter.com

About Burrell Behavioral Health:

Burrell Behavioral Health works with more than 40,000 clients across 26 counties in Missouri and Arkansas. Burrell has more than 450 licensed providers that offer a full continuum of care through our integrated network. Services include individual therapy and counseling, addiction recovery, psychiatric and medication management, educational and therapeutic groups, crisis intervention, adult stabilization, case management, residential treatment, diagnostic testing and evaluations and developmental disability support. Learn more about Burrell’s programs and services at www.burrellcenter.com.


24-Hour Crisis Line

If you or a loved one is experiencing a mental health or substance-use crisis, please call our toll-free 24-hour telephone line. Our team can help provide immediate assistance.

Southwest Missouri: 1-800-494-7355

Central Missouri: 1-800-395-2132

National Help Line: Call or Text 988