Mental Health Grants

Mental Health Grants

NAFC Education Foundation Empowers Mental Health Initiatives Through Grant Funding

In 2023, The New Albany Floyd County Education Foundation announced the recipients of its inaugural Mental Health Grants. These grants are dedicated to fostering the well-being of students and educators throughout NAFC Schools, with a total funding of $47,000 allocated for inventive projects tackling diverse mental health challenges.

The Foundation’s Board of Directors reviews each application. In the first year, 18 exceptional projects were selected for funding, each demonstrating a commitment to enhancing mental health support within NAFC Schools. The initiatives covered a range of schools and grade levels, highlighting creativity and innovation in addressing mental health issues.

“This funding reflects our commitment to creating a nurturing environment where every student can thrive emotionally and academically. These grants will help cultivate resilience, empower young minds, and foster a community where the mental health of our youth is a priority,” said board member, Tish Frederick.

The Mental Health Grant 2023 recipients and their respective projects are as follows:

  • Early Intervention Programs – Carolyn Huffman, Preschool – Implementation of a research-based curriculum focusing on Self-Regulation and Social-Emotional Skills for early intervention special education.
  • Floyds Knobs Elementary – Katie Stein, School Social Worker -Implementation of monthly mental health days for staff, providing guidance/education/support.
  • Georgetown Elementary – Allison Groves, First Grade – School-wide assembly and small group sessions with Look Out for the Left Out.
  • Georgetown Elementary – Stephanie Tostaine, Administrative Intern – Implementation of monthly mental health days for staff, providing guidance/education/support.
  • Georgetown Elementary School – Ashley Farmer, Special Education Teacher K-4 (ED/Behavior) – Implementation of an SEL program/tools in a new behavior classroom.
  • Green Valley Elementary School – Christy Heiligenberg, Elementary School Counselor – Creation of a sustainable Mental Health and Wellness Program for staff, students, and families.
  • Hazelwood Middle School – Amy Moore, Special Education, 5th-8th – Trauma Informed Education books for teacher professional development and implementing strategies into the school for students.
  • Highland Hills Middle School – Kristen Boehnlein, Social Studies-7th grade – Items for the Random Acts of Kindness Club to promote kindness in school and the community.
  • Highland Hills Middle School – Lindsey Brown, 7th-grade math – Assistance for teachers and students with mental fatigue and seasonal depression using Pickleball.
  • Mt. Tabor Elementary – Teshea Barbee, 4th grade – Improvement of staff mental health through social exercise; yoga, Zumba, Pickleball, and shared gym memberships.
  • New Albany High School – Grace Rieger, Special Education 9th-12th – Creation of a school-wide freshman Welcome Packet/Outreach Program.
  • New Albany High School – Kristi Charbonneau, Special Education Facilitator – Funds for special needs students with sensory or anxiety issues.
  • New Albany High School – Robert Upton, Theatre Teacher 9-12 – After-school program teaching kids with anxiety and stress disorders simple carpentry.
  • New Albany High School – Shelby Gliebe, Business Teacher & Varsity Head Coach – Mental performance coaching for high school girls through Andrew Grantz Mindset Solutions.
  • Prosser Career Education Center – Jennifer Lewis, Health Science/Health Careers – “Teddy Bear Clinic” to promote self-value and compassion in local Title I schools.
  • Prosser Career Education Center – Mary Hixon, Curriculum Articulation Coordinator – Construction of an outside classroom area to support teachers’ and students’ mental health.
  • S Ellen Jones Elementary – Hannah Hayes, Special Education-Ed K-4 – Implementation of the PATHS program to navigate social-emotional needs and calming strategies.
  • Slate Run – Counselor – Danielle Christian, Implementation of monthly mental health days for staff, providing guidance/education/support.

These initiatives align with the Foundation’s mission to prioritize mental health and well-being within the educational community. “The healthier our staff is, the better they can show up for our children; the healthier our children are, the more equipped and prepared they are to learn. These grants are just one step in the right direction and have endless possibilities of impact on our district,” said Molly Rubesh, NAFC Education Foundation Board Member.