Tampa, Fla. – Today, First Lady Casey DeSantis announced the establishment of Hope for Healing Florida, a new multi-agency mental health and substance abuse campaign. This coordinated effort will incorporate the combined resources of the Florida Department of Children and Families, the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice and the Florida Department of Education to better serve the needs of Floridians struggling with mental health and substance abuse.

The campaign will also leverage, in part, the resources of private sector partners to produce and distribute Mental Health and Substance Abuse Resource Guides throughout the state at no cost to taxpayers. Guides will include information on state partnered programs from crisis intervention to prevention, to on-going care to help support children and families suffering in Florida by providing meaningful help in a timely fashion that meets their needs.

Finally, the First Lady announced the official launch of the campaign’s website, HopeforHealingFL.com, aimed at consolidating information for better accessibility to all Floridians.

Photo Credit: Governor’s Press Office

“Hope for Healing Florida is an initiative about helping good people in crisis by leveraging the resources of our state agencies, private partners and our administration,” said First Lady Casey DeSantis. “Helping our youth and families avert drug addiction and address mental health issues will help them reach their full potential and lead healthier lives. And this is just step one.”

“I would like to thank the First Lady for her leadership in placing Floridians’ mental health at the forefront of our administration,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “This program will be a catalyst of change to address the mental health and substance abuse challenges facing our youth and our families. Casey’s resolve has always been to protect those most vulnerable, and today, she’s taking action to do so through Hope for Healing Florida.”

“I applaud First Lady Casey DeSantis for her bold action in helping children and their families engage in meaningful mental health services to place them on the path to resiliency. No child should feel alone when facing the effects of a mental illness and families need to know there is help,” said Department of Children and Families Secretary Chad Poppell. “I am honored to have such strong advocates in Governor and First Lady DeSantis, and I look forward to continuing our work to strengthen Florida’s families.”

“Today marks the start of a new norm. With the establishment of forward-thinking laws and meaningful partnerships, we are creating a statewide culture that is instinctively supportive and laser-focused on recovery,” said Department of Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran. “Our state’s education system is vital to identifying youth who are struggling with mental illness and substance abuse. We provide critical training that empowers school personnel to connect them and their families with mental health assistance. We are continuing to strengthen these efforts, and we thank the Legislature for prioritizing this issue.”

“Mental Health continues to be a silent issue that affects all ages – adults and our youth,” said Department of Juvenile Justice Secretary Simone Marstiller. “It is critical that we bring awareness to the available resources for mental health and substance abuse services to ensure treatment is provided early. Mental health is as important as physical health, and with the right treatment, challenges can be overcome.”



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