Federal grants awarded to support mental health programs in Rockford

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) – Tim Nabors has been a member of the Winnebago County Mental Health Board since its inception in 2020.

Nabors believes the first step to addressing mental health issues is to open up the conversation.

“Between social media and COVID, it really sparked a conversation about mental health,” Nabors said. “Addressing this issue improves their quality of life and helps keep the community safe.”

Leaders say breaking the stigma around mental health paves the way for people who struggle to learn more about services available to help in the state line.

“Mental health issues are a problem across the country, and obviously our community isn’t immune to people who have these issues,” said Rockford Alderperson Chad Tuneberg.

Tuneberg says that while getting people the help they need is a priority, there are some tax concerns. Specifically, he wants to make sure that new federal grants for these programs really make a difference by giving people who are struggling a healthier state of mind.

“Even though it’s federal, it’s still our taxpayers’ money,” Tuneberg said. “So we want to make sure they work.”

Council members approved approximately $1.5 million in funding from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development on Monday evening. Tuneberg and Nabors agree that dollars can make a difference, leading to a win-win not just for individuals, but for the community as a whole.

“If we give people more mental and physical stability, we would have a better workforce and more jobs,” Nabors said.

Rosecrance and Carpenter’s Place are some of the organizations that will benefit from this federal funding.

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