BY JABAAR EDMOND, Contributor
ST. PETERSBURG – The Clergy Roundtable Meeting on Mental Health took place Tuesday, March 6 at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Education and Conference Center, 701 4th St. S. An initiative of the Pinellas County Urban League, its purpose was to help connect the dots by facilitating the collective work of clergy, clinicians and community organizations for reform at the community level.
“The Roundtable meeting brings together a diverse group of leaders that represent the mental health profession, judicial system, the education community, faith-based organizations and many others,” said Dr. LaDonna Butler, project director, Pinellas County Urban League. “We discuss local mental health issues, learn more about existing programs and identify ways to support and help those on the ground.”
After the invocation given by Rev. Clarence Williams, pastor of Greater Mt. Zion AME, guests were welcomed by Kimberly Brown-Williams, program director of Healthy Start at Johns Hopkins All Children.
The session focused on highlighting the progress and lessons learned during group and individual meetings, festivals and training sessions. They also engaged in strategic community planning for the future.
This year’s goals are:
• Collect information on mental health initiatives in the faith community and expand the current working definition of health
• Exchange information about services, share programming ideas and expand the network of clergy and those in the “helping” profession
• Identify how clergy can use their influence to improve education, awareness, intervention and prevention campaigns