Friday, May 31, 2013

Mental Health Conference at the White House

RAMS President & CEO Kavoos G. Bassiri, LMFT, CGP, will join President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden for a conference on mental health for launch of a national dialogue to reduce stigma and address the barriers that prevent people from seeking mental health services because of the shame, fear, and secrecy associated with mental illness & their treatment.

On Monday, June 3, 2013, President Obama and Vice President Biden are hosting this conference to discuss how state, local and tribal governments, mental health advocates, educators, health care providers, faith leaders and consumers can collaborate to eliminate mental health stigma so that the millions of Americans suffering from mental health problems will not hesitate to seek help.  Also, President Obama has asked U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to launch a national conversation to increase understanding and awareness about mental health.

“While millions of Americans struggle with mental health problems, those who need help are too often afraid to ask,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney stated at a White House press briefing on May 15.  Mr. Carney further emphasized that the conference on June 3 will focus on helping those struggling with a mental health problem recognize the importance of reaching out for assistance.

RAMS is truly honored to be invited to participate in the White House conference and join this national dialogue & advocacy effort. 

Click HERE for more details about this exciting event.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

APA Heritage Month Closing Night Celebration Hosted by API Circle

Once again, RAMS is very pleased to be a community co-sponsor of the exciting  API Circle event, held on Friday May 31.  After very successful events in San Francisco, Oakland, and San Mateo, API Circle is headed back to where it all started 3 years ago!

When: Friday, May 31, 2013,  6pm - 9pm
Where:  One Ferry Plaza, San Francisco (behind the Ferry Building - close to Embarbarcadero BART/Muni)
How much: Cost to attend is Free!

FB: http://tinyurl.com/apicircle-may2013
RSVP at http://apicircle-may2013.eventbrite.com/

This year, we are honored that the API Circle event will be highlighting RAMS as well as another organization GOPIO Silicon Valley (Global Organization of People of Indian Origin), a non-partisan, secular global organization engaged in promoting the well being of People of Indian Origin, enhancing cooperation and communication between Indians living in different countries. 

Let's celebrate the closing night of Asian & Pacific American Heritage Month together!
 
You can definitely expect the same features …
• GREAT people to mix and mingle with
• TERRIFIC co-hosts and co-sponsoring organizations
• highlighting & supporting AWESOME API community non-profits and their work
• WONDERFUL performances
• FUN raffle prizes (every attendee gets a free ticket!)

 There will also be
• DELICIOUS complimentary Thai food while supplies last (and for sale downstairs)
• WONDERFUL samples from Jade Chocolates for the early birds
 
And there will be no cover charge!

Festive ethnic attire is encouraged but business, business casual, or even just casual are fine ... please come as you are!

See you soon - and please remember to invite your friends to join in too!

Steering Committee
Claire Chang | Kavoos Bassiri | Keesa Ocampo | Manufou Liaiga Anoai | Mary Nicely | Stephanie Balon Wong | Tamiko Wong

Co-Hosts
Ajay Bhutoria | Al Perez | Alisha Woo | Arnold Mew | Clifford Yee | Dairian Wan | Derek Lang | Diana Lin | Doreen Lew | Eric Lau | Frank Chui | Ivan Cheng | Gemmy Tsai | HoChie Tsai | Jen Low | Jenny Yu | John Tam | Jonathan Leong | Ken Pascal | Kyle Oura | Melanie Lew | Michael Lok | Paul Miyamoto | Pearl Wong | Roji Oyama | Ron Lee | Rose Chung | Ryan Takemiya | Sheetal Ohri | Sourichanh Sirch Chanthyasack | Steven Lee | Suzie Lee | Susie Willemsz-Geeroms | Taiko Fujimura | Ted Fang | Thanh Huynh

Sponsor
Serramonte Subaru

Media Sponsors
Diya TV | Hyphen Magazine | KAXT1

Community Co-Sponsors
Asian American Donor Program (AADP) | Asian American Theater Company (AATC) | Asian Americans for Community Outreach (AACO) | Asian Business Connectors | AsianWeek Foundation (AWF) | ASPIRE - Asian Students Promoting Immigrant Rights through Education | Chinatown YMCA | Coalition of Asian American Government Employees (CAAGE) | Corporate Asian American Employee Network (CAAEN) | Filipino American Arts Exposition | GOPIO SIlicon Valley | International Lao New Year Festival (ILNYF) | JPMorgan Chase Asians & Pacific Islanders Reaching for Excellence (AsPIRE) San Francisco Bay Area Chapter | Laotian American National Alliance (LANA) | Miss Asian America | Nihonmachi Street Fair | OCA - East Bay | OCA - San Francisco | Pacific Asian American Women Bay Area Coalition (PAAWBAC) | RAMA | Richmond Area Multi-Services - San Francisco (RAMS) | San Francisco Asian Professionals | San Francisco Global Vietnamese Film Festival | South East Asian Cultural Heritage & Musical Performing Arts (SEACHAMPA) | TaiwaneseAmerican.org | Taiwanese American Professionals - SF / Bay area (TAP-SF) | the it's ok campaign | Wa Sung Community Service Club

Prize Donors
Aaron Lum | Chili Pepper Event | Chinatown YMCA | Frances Kai-Hwa Wang | Kavoos Bassiri | Keesa Ocampo | Manufou Liaiga Anoai | Peoples Bank | Taiko Fujimura | Tamiko Wong

Vendors and Tablers
ASPIRE - Asian Students Promoting Immigrant Rights through Education | Corporate Asian American Employee Network (CAAEN) | Jade Chocolates | Serramonte Subaru | Sumofish | Taiko Fujimura 
List current as of 5/21/13
 
RSVP at http://apicircle-may2013.eventbrite.com/
To learn more about Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, check out APA Heritage Foundation's page: http://apiaheritagesf.org/history.shtml
The API Circle is an alliance of San Francisco Bay Area Asian & Pacific Islander American leaders and organizations with the mission to create meaningful relationships and collaborative efforts that are cross-generational, ideologically neutral and diversely representative.  

Friday, May 10, 2013

Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day 2013

 May 10


First established in 2010 by the State of California and the City & County of San Francisco, Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day recognizes the importance of raising awareness about mental health and promoting mental wellness in the Asian Pacific American community. 
Approximately 25% of Americans in a given year are impacted by mental health conditions regardless of gender, age, race, religion and socioeconomic status, according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). Asian & Pacific Islanders (A&PIs) specifically make up one of the fastest growing ethnic communities in the United States, yet they have the lowest rates of utilization of mental health services among ethnic populations, which may be due to the substantial stigma that exists (since many individuals and families remain in denial or silence about their situation) as well as cultural & linguistic isolation of the community, family, and individual. These disparities indicate the critical need to raise awareness & talk about mental health, de-stigmatize seeking help, and increase access to & support culturally competent/relevant services for the Asian American & Pacific Islander community.

For more information on Asian American and Pacific Islander mental health facts, check out the NAMI Multicultural Action Center HERE.
Resolution presented by Senator Leland Yee to the CA State Senate in April 2010,
establishing Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day on May 10 statewide
"This measure would recognize May 10, 2010,
and each May 10 thereafter, as
Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day,
and acknowledge the importance of
raising awareness about mental health
in the Asian Pacific American community."

The establishment of Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day was an effort spearheaded by RAMS along with California State Senator Leland Y. Yee, Ph.D. and San Francisco Board of Supervisor (District 1) Eric Mar.  It was overwhelmingly supported by many major associations and community coalitions. Since May is already established nationally as the Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and as Mental Health Awareness Month, institution of this day in the month of May more closely aligns both awareness efforts. 
San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee at a RAMS event in 2011
honoring Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day

San Francisco District 1 Supervisor Eric Mar at a RAMS event in 2011
honoring Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day
ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS IN MAY 2013
RAMS is excited to announce some of the following events recognizing Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day!
May 10, 10:00am-12:00pm at Chinatown Public Health Center, 1490 Mason Street, San Francisco: A panel presentation & gathering of public officials, healthcare professionals, Bay Area local & national leaders, community advocates, stakeholder institutions/ organizations, and educators & researcherson to discuss issues of detecting and addressing mental health concerns in primary care & non-mental health care settings. Details HERE.

May 10, 8:30am - 4:30pm at St. Mary's Event Center, 1111 Gough Street, San Francisco: A training on cultural and clinical consideration in working with Filipino-Americans with mental health issues, presented by Dr. Jei Africa.  View the flyer by clicking on the image at right to enlarge (right-click and select any options to "Open").
The CAAEN Leadership Group is launching their "it's ok" campaign to bring attention to and promote awareness of mental health issues in the Asian community. Details HERE.

The city of Austin, Texas, has followed San Francisco's lead and proclaimed May 10, 2013 as Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day in Austin.  Special events have been scheduled, including this training presented by the Asian Behavioral Health Network of Austin.

Also on May 10, the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and The White House Office of Public Engagement are hosting an AAPI Briefing on Suicide Prevention and Mental Health.  [UPDATE: Click HERE for the article "Raising Awareness about Mental Health and Suicide Prevention in the AAPI Community" by Larke N. Huang)
Sharing Stories About The Asian Pacific American Experience & Mental Health
Ramey Ko shared a personal & inspiring story related Asian American Mental Health, in honor of Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day and the Friends Do Make A Difference campaign to raise awareness & destigmatize mental health in high school students in 2012. Mr. Ko is currently a Commission Member of the White House AAPI Initiative, and is an Associate Judge of the City of Austin Municipal Court.
  



Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day Over The Years
A sampling of some of the events held in previous years:
In 2012, RAMS collaborated with National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association (NAAPIMHA), and its partner interTrend Communications, in their national Friends DO Make a Difference campaign.This creative and collaborative outreach effort provided and distributed messages via TV, online social media, and promotional events at high schools that focus on the importance and power of being a friend for someone facing mental health challenges.
On May 9, 2012, local public radio station KALW 91.7 FM aired a three-part series on Asian American mental health issues during the Crosscurrents news show.  RAMS is honored to have been asked to contribute and assist in the making of this noteworthy program. The entire series was heard on air at KALW 91.7FM, but is also available online at www.kalw.org.

On May 10, 2012, Hyphen Magazine wrote an article in honor of Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day: AAMM (the column's author) revisits their roots and considers the impact of a mantra like "It Gets Better" in the article titled "Deciding Not To Bail".
On May 10, 2011, an all-day training event "Asian Pacific American Mental Health: Knowing Our Roots and Growing Beyond" was held in San Francisco, featuring  an esteemed panel of presenters that are recognized leaders, trailblazers, and legends in the field of mental health and working with Asian Pacific Americans.
On May 9, 2011, the College of San Mateo presented an Asian Pacific American Mental Health Awareness Panel, featuring a panel presentation from RAMS staff about the importance of mental health and culturally-competent services in the A/PI community, working in the mental health profession, as well as challenges and issues specific to the A/PI communities.
RAMS is looking forward to many more years of raising awareness about Asian Pacific American Mental Health!


Sunday, May 5, 2013

Honoring Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day

Please join us in honoring
Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day
May 10
(May is also the National Mental Health Awareness Month
and Asian Pacific American Heritage Month)

In honor of Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day on May 10th, Richmond Area Multi-Services, Inc. is proudly joining many others in the community at a press conference to discuss the issues of detecting and addressing mental health concerns in primary care & non-mental health care settings. 
 
WHEN: Friday, May 10th from 10:00am to 12:00pm

WHERE/HOST: 
Chinatown Public Health Center
San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH)
1490 Mason Street, San Francisco, CA 94133
               
WHAT: Join public officials, healthcare professionals, Bay Area local & national leaders, community advocates, stakeholder institutions/ organizations, and educators & researchers who will gather to recognize Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day

Oftentimes, those with mental health concerns first present to primary care & non-mental health care providers; however, many health professionals in primary care and other healthcare professions may have challenges in recognizing, diagnosing, and treating these conditions effectively due a variety of factors. There is an additional challenge for the Asian American community, as literature indicates that these individuals tend to seek help from their primary care practitioner rather than mental health professionals. If mental health problems are not treated, they can worsen or prevent recovery from the medical conditions. At this press conference/community event, experts in health care will engage in a discussion about the challenging factors we face in this regard, what needs to be & can be done, and how they have effectively & innovatively integrated services so that there is comprehensive assessment and coordination between mental health and non-mental health care professionals.

SPEAKERS:
Peter Ng, MD, Pediatrician, Chinatown Public Health Center, SFDPH
Tung Thanh Nguyen, MD, Commissioner, President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans & Pacific Islanders; Clinical Professor, UCSF School of Medicine
Irene Sung, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Community Programs, SFDPH; Medical Director, Community Behavioral Health Services, SFDPH
Ho Luong Tran, MD, MPH, President & CEO, National Council of Asian Pacific Islander Physicians
Albert Yu, MD, MPH, MBA, Director, Chinatown Public Health Center, SFDPH; Clinical Professor, UCSF, Department of Family and Community Medicine
    
Moderated by: Helena Chan, MD, Medical Director, RAMS, Inc.

This event is sponsored by RAMS.

UPDATE: The panel speakers at the press event:



L-to-R: Drs. Helena Chan, Peter Ng, Tung Thanh Nguyen, Irene Sung, Ho Luong Tran, and Albert Yu
 
About Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day
 
 Approximately 25% of Americans in a given year are impacted by mental health conditions regardless of gender, age, race, religion and socioeconomic status, according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).  Asian & Pacific Islanders (A&PIs) specifically make up one of the fastest growing ethnic communities in the United States, yet they have the lowest rates of utilization of mental health services among ethnic populations, which may be due to the substantial stigma that exists (since many individuals and families remain in denial or silence about their situation) as well as cultural & linguistic isolation of the community, family, and individual.  These disparities indicate the critical need to raise awareness & talk about mental health, de-stigmatize seeking help, and increase access to & support culturally competent/relevant services for the Asian American & Pacific Islander community.

The establishment of Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day was an effort spearheaded by RAMS along with California State Senator Leland Y. Yee, Ph.D. and San Francisco Board of Supervisor (District 1) Eric Mar. 

First established in 2010 by the State of California and the City & County of San Francisco, it recognizes the importance of raising awareness about mental health and promoting mental wellness in the Asian Pacific American community.  It is overwhelmingly supported by many major associations and community coalitions.  Since May is already established nationally as the Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and as Mental Health Awareness Month, institution of this day in the month of May more closely aligns both awareness efforts. 
 
We are pleased to share that the City of Austin in Texas, has proclaimed May 10th as Asian Pacific American Mental Health Day this year.  Also, The White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and The White House Office of Public Engagement are hosting an AAPI Briefing on Suicide Prevention and Mental Health on May 10th.  San Francisco Department of Public Health is holding an all-day training on May 10th focused on working with Filipino-Americans. There are many other outreach activities being held on this day.