content='5;url='http-equiv='refresh'/> Green Ribbon Advocate


I'm Kristin Melton, and I am a Green Ribbon Advocate. What's a Green Ribbon Advocate? It's a title for anyone who wants to show support for the children's mental health cause -- and that's what I am all about!

The National Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health embraced the green ribbon symbol several years ago to begin a nationwide campaign to bring awareness to an issue that affects 1 in 5 children. As an Executive Board Member and National Spokesperson for the organization, I have worked to share this campaign and have stressed that if you are wearing or displaying the FFCMH green ribbon symbol, then you are a Green Ribbon Advocate too!

Sharing the children's mental health message is a big part of who I am. It's important to me because of the work I do as a therapist, but most importantly because I'm a mom and I want to make sure that my children have all the benefits and personal awareness of good mental health care.

Paying attention to your brain is just as important as going to the dentist or seeing your physician for your annual health physical. In fact, I believe that one of the largest stigma battles we face with mental health is the belief that if you "try hard enough" to overcome them, the symptoms will just disappear. Imagine telling a diabetic that! We wouldn't, of course, but with mental health it is said all the time. It's time for that to stop. The best way that I know of to share that message is of course through the green ribbon, but also by educating our youngest generation with the facts so that they grow up to be conscious of the importance of mental health care -- not ashamed, or blamed.

This blog is dedicated to all things mental health and I hope that you will look around at the various resources and information that is provided. Visit "Kristin's Blog" above for commentary on children's mental health news and events, and my "Mrs. Midwest 2013" blog for the various appearances and campaigns promoted throughout our communities.

I hope you will display a green ribbon somewhere at sometime and consider yourself a green ribbon advocate too!

The Facts: 1 in 5 Children have a Mental Health Challenge

One in five might not sound like a lot to some people. Think of it as 20% of all children. Still not making an impact? How about this... In an average classroom of 25 children, that means that 5 children are affected. In other words, every classroom in America has at least 5 students with a mental health challenge that is most likely not being addressed. What's the big deal? Untreated mental health disorders can lead to school failure, personal victimization, substance abuse, violent/criminal behavior, and even suicide. What's worse? It can be avoided simply by diagnosis and treatment. It seems a shame that we are sentencing 5 children per classroom to the fates listed above. Be a green ribbon advocate because of the facts.

Looking for support as a parent of a child with a mental health challenge?

The Federation of Families can help! With over 120 chapters in the United States, Guam, Puerto Rico, and Canada, there is one that is close to you. Visit the FFCMH website to see the list of the current active chapters and state organizations that help to advocate and support children and families with mental health needs. Click Here.