SMH Gala Raises Awareness and Funds for Programs Serving Children and Families

Contact: Steve McLean
Communications Director
(206) 302-2261

SEATTLE – May 13, 2015 – Sound Mental Health, which served more than 3,400 children and thousands of families last year, announced that its annual fundraiser, Mental Health Matters, will highlight its work with children and families. Proceeds raised during the event, “Celebrating Healthy Families,” will strengthen SMH programs, including those that offer distressed families hope and an opportunity for stability. Mental Health Matters takes place Thursday, May 14, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue.

Renowned journalist Margaret Larson, of KING-TV’s New Day Northwest, will serve as Mistress of Ceremonies for a second year. In addition to bringing her extensive media credentials to the role, Ms. Larson will also inspire attendees to support SMH through donations. Ms. Larson will bring a unique perspective to the fundraising portion by sharing her own personal experiences supporting family members struggling with mental health issues.

Swil Kanim, critically-acclaimed musician, actor and storyteller, will serve as the evening’s keynote speaker. A member of the Lummi Nation, and a product of the foster care system, Swil Kanim is a powerful advocate of self-expression and perseverance, emphasizing his message on youth. Through his keynote address, “The Healing Power of Honor and Self-Expression,” Swil Kanim will share his story of personal healing with the audience using music, storytelling, poetry and audience interaction.

“This year’s gala will be an intimate affair that will deeply engage and inspire members of our community,” said Tresa Thomas-Massiongale, SMH Community Development Officer. “We believe that the family unit is at the core of a strong and stable community and the funds raised during the gala will represent hope and an opportunity at a better life for children, parents and entire families.”

The gala, one of the most eagerly-anticipated community behavioral health events of the year, attracts local and regional leaders. Everyone from community activists, local celebrities and hundreds of supporters who rally around the organization’s mission to improve lives through innovative Services will be in attendance.

Event sponsors include: Aegis Living (Event Sponsor), Enterprise, Martyn Family Foundation, the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe and Puget Sound Business Journal (Gold Sponsors); Boeing, Genoa Healthcare, Heritage Bank, Regence, Keeney’s Office Supply, Perkins Coie, Seattle Children’s and Unimark (Silver Sponsors):, Argosy University, Amerigroup RealSolutions, Bennett Bigelow & Leedom, Clark Nuber, PS, Copiers Northwest, Linn, Schisel & DeMarco, PS, Seattle Counseling Service, Michael & Alexander, PLLC, Parker, Smith & Feek, Shelgren Financial Group and US Bank, (Table Sponsors); A&A printing, Inc. and ThinkAlike (In-Kind Sponsors).

About Sound Mental Health

Sound Mental Health is a private, tax-exempt organization that has provided a comprehensive array of mental health and related services to the King County community since 1966. Our goal is to help individuals and families achieve the highest level of independence and (mental) health possible. Services are tailored to meet the unique needs of different age, disability and cultural/ethnic groups.