Skip to content

Get help now

Call or Text 988

A Success!

The Kim Foundation, in partnership with several community organizations, hosted the first ever Middle American School Mental Health Conference at the CHI Center on May 29th and 30th, followed by the annual Nebraska School Mental Health Conference on the 31st at Capitol Marriott. More than 700 individuals gathered to network, learn, and share ideas that will foster hope for schools, youth and communities.

The energy at the conference was palpable, and the passion that was shared was inspiring. To see so many likeminded individuals coming together to better serve the youth of our communities was truly humbling. One of the biggest highlights was the youth panel. These youth were wise beyond their years and shared their experiences and insight with mental health. The youth panel always steals the show, but this year’s seemed exceptionally moving.

For the first time we also did a parent panel. Parents shared their stories of mental health services for youth or losing their child to suicide. The emotion in the room was evident, but the courage and strength of these parents using their grief to help others is something that will stay with attendees for years to come. I want to personally thank both the youth and the parent panel for your willingness to participate and make this conference so special.

I may be biased, but this year’s keynote speakers were also some of the best we’ve ever brought to Omaha! The wisdom, energy and passion they shared with attendees was incredible, and they provided strong content for us to bring back to our daily practices to better serve those in our community.

The content of the breakout sessions was also strong, and I am so thankful to those who led the way in these sessions. We included a new portion of state breakout sessions where each state joined together to create a school mental health action plan to be implemented in the coming years that was personalized to their state. The ideas that came from these sessions are going to make such an impact!

Whether you joined us as a school official, a mental health practitioner, an advocate, one of our 43 vendors and sponsors, a youth, or a parent, we are so honored you joined us and shared three days with The Kim Foundation. Seeing such a strong network who have a passion for serving the youth of our communities brings me hope for our next generation.

We look forward to seeing everyone at the Nebraska School Mental Health Conference in May of 2025!

Julia Hebenstreit, Executive Director

Julia received her J.D. from Creighton University in 2005, and her BS in Journalism from the University of Nebraska Omaha in 2002. She has been with The Kim Foundation since 2011, and prior to that worked for local non-profits doing development, strategic planning, communications and advancement. She has a passion for helping people and improving lives, and serves on the Executive Committee for Nebraska Association of Behavioral Health Organizations, as the 2015 Hill Day State Captain for the state of Nebraska, and as an active member of the Nebraska Suicide Prevention Coalition, the Early Childhood Mental Health Coalition, BHECN Advisory Committee, RESPECT Advisory Board, Connections Advisory Board and the Project Propel Planning Group.