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May is quickly coming to an end, which seems extremely hard to believe! The past 14 months have been incredibly challenging on so many levels, but we are finally seeing light at the end of the tunnel and larger glimpses of hope breakthrough in our communities. From law enforcement, to teachers, school personnel and administrators, to healthcare professionals, advocates, volunteers, frontline workers, parents, and youth . . . you have all endured so much this past year, but you’ve also stood together, helped your neighbor, celebrated our true heroes, healed the sick, evolved to best serve our youth in uncertain times, protected our communities, and survived a year like we haven’t seen in my lifetime. The Kim Foundation thanks you for whatever role you played in allowing hope to breakthrough – whether for yourself, or someone else. Thank you.

Another area of hope that we continue to celebrate is Mental Health Awareness Month, which is coming to an end on May 31st. Hopefully you took some time this month to raise awareness, breakdown stigma, provide hope, and shine a light on the importance of quality mental health for all. However, I would encourage you to not let these efforts end on the 31st. Mental health is something that impacts each all of us. It may be one of those things that we do not stop to pay attention to until our own, or someone we care about, mental health is suffering, but the more awareness that surrounds mental health the better off we will all be! So continue prioritizing this well beyond the close of May.

Time is running out to get registered for the Nebraska School Mental Health Conference! Register today for the June 2nd & 3rd virtual conference. Join The Kim Foundation, ESU #3 and our Steering Committee partners as we welcome three incredible keynote presentations, and 50 local experts providing high-quality breakout sessions. 7.75 CEUs will be offered, as well as an additional 1.25 ethics CEU session in the afternoon on the second day. All of this is only $50! Our theme is HOPE: Health, Opportunity, Partnerships & Equity. Join us, as we bring HOPE to so many through this special event!

Lastly, we know that the summer is a great time to relax, unwind, and spend time with those you love most. It’s also a great time to continue prioritizing your mental health! So join us for a free event a Summer Mental Health Townhall, which will be held virtually on June 22nd at 7:00pm. We have some wonderful local experts who will provide tips on staying mentally well throughout the summer, as well as share information on available resources. We also have two local youth share their stories and provide hope to their peers. Join us for this special night by registering here:

Julia Hebenstreit, The Kim Foundation

Julia Hebenstreit, Executive Director of The Kim Foundation

Julia Hebenstreit is the Executive Director of The Kim Foundation. She 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.