Mental Fitness Inc.

building resilience in youth

aka Mental Fitness   |   Spartanburg, SC   |  www.mentalfitnessinc.org

Mission

Mental Fitness is a nonprofit, charitable organizations established to reduce the mental health stigma and to strengthen communities by preventing the development of psychological disorders and improving mental wellness among individuals. We believe in building a community where all people manage their thoughts, feelings and behaviors in a healthy way. Our mission to support mental health initiatives by offering resources proven to enhance an individual's ability to cope with stress, to make healthy choices, and to develop positive relationships.

Ruling year info

2008

Principal Officer

Ms. Robyn Hussa Farrell

Development Director

Lori Burney

Main address

PO Box 402

Spartanburg, SC 29304 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

NORMAL

EIN

20-8489636

NTEE code info

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (F01)

Arts Education/Schools (A25)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, emotional and behavioral disorders and addictions are currently on the rise. In 2018, it was estimated that approximately 88% of Latino youth, 77% of African American youth, and 76% of Caucasian youth suffer from untreated disorders or addictions. The CDC reports that 1 in 4 children experiences physical, sexual, or emotional abuse and 1 in 4 women experienced domestic violence. In 2018, the American Psychological Association revealed that the average stress level among teens is 5.8 on a 10-point scale with 45% feeling stressed “all the time.” In 2020, roughly 46,000 South Carolina youth age 12-17 had at least one major depressive episode (MDE), and only 28.2% were receiving consistent treatment. There are 32,000 South Carolina youth who currently experience severe major depression which often co-occurs with other disorders like substance use, disorderly behavior and anxiety.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Wellness Workshops

Mental Fitness offers a variety of Wellness Workshops for each of its four primary areas of engagement. Each session is strategically designed to recognize signs of emotional or behavioral disorders and to provide participants with simple, practical methods to effectively incorporate healthy coping skills into their individual circle of influence.

Population(s) Served

Through our extensive work in K-12 schools over the last 14 years, we know the great shame and stigma that surrounds mental health and substance use disorders. This stigma can paralyze people from seeking education and treatment. As a result, we know that one-third of students in K-12 schools struggle with disordered eating and related mental health disorders. In response, we have created an engaging, peer led mentoring program called FLOURISH. Flourish is built from disordered eating prevention models and specifically addresses the seven mental fitness protective factors that build resilience.

Methodology. The FLOURISH college leaders are trained through our curriculum and taught mindfulness based stress reduction techniques. They learn the program well enough to oversee high school / middle school students.

The workshops include fun activities such as yoga, dance and movement, as well as creative exercises like journal writing, crafting, painting and more. For the six years we have deployed the program, the students from all ages increase self-awareness and confidence.

The inception for the FLOURISH program began in 2009 when Robyn Hussa Farrell and Laura Lees, PsyD, CEDS, wrote the book Healthy Selfitude: A practical approach to self-acceptance using performing arts and yoga techniques. In 2015, Hussa began the process of building the FLOURISH curriculum and tested the model in collaboration with Spartanburg Day School ASTRA students and at Meeting Street Academy elementary aged children. In 2017 we began incorporating a summer camp model as well.

Population(s) Served

As featured in: 2020 Resilient Richland initiative, 2019 Suicide Prevention Initiative, Spartanburg County and Cherokee County Schools, 2019 American Psychiatric Association annual conference (poster presentation), 2019 Alternative School Educator Summit, Columbia, 2019-2020 SC Vocational Rehabilitation program, 2017 SC School Social Worker Conference, 2016-2018 Compassionate Schools / Resilient Schools Summer Summits, Spartanburg, 2017 Resiliency Symposium, District 3, 4, and 7 Schools – Spartanburg, 2018 EEDA / CATE Winter Conference for Spartanburg, Cherokee and Union Guidance Counselors.

5 Minute Mindfulness is designed for classroom educators who can easily and quickly deliver activities that have shown to improve resilience, self-regulation, coping skills and mental wellbeing of students.

Created by Robyn Hussa Farrell, MFA, E-RYT, YACEP, participants will be able to lead evidence-based mindfulness exercises, journal writing techniques, deep breathing exercises and gentle movement in the classroom setting.
One of our trained facilitators will lead a 1.5 hour workshop to teach educators how to deploy the curriculum. The comprehensive program includes:

● 100 page handbook with scripted content
● Access to Sharpen digital library of resources and videos
● PowerPoint curriculum
● Handouts and resources for the students
● Online course material

Based in 14 years of research developing evidence-based mindfulness programs for schools and treatment centers, these are proven techniques that build resilience in youth and adults alike.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Awards

Wisconsin Psychological Association 2009

Invited Presenter

National Eating Disorder Association Annual Conference 2007

Presenter

Champion in Women's Health 2010

Wisconsin Women's Health Foundation

Peace Award 2014

Converse College / Westgate Family Therapy

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of people who received clinical mental health care

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

Wellness Workshops

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our goal is to safely connect individuals to the appropriate level of care for their mental health or substance use disorder.

Number of participants attending course/session/workshop

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

Wellness Workshops

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We reach our audiences by collaborating with partner agencies, youth programs, schools and out-of-school time activities.

Number of participants engaged in programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

These numbers include our live and online participants in our programs, online websites, social media impressions and online courses through our mobile app technology platform.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Our goals for 2020 include:

-- Expanding our online educational tools through the Sharpen technology platform, so more educators and school professionals have access to the latest mental health education and research. This software and platform provides professional development and best practices through evidence-based strategies.

-- Working to expand our professional development trainings for school faculty through a train-the-trainer model

-- Continuing to deliver our evidence-based professional development programs that have shown to improve confidence in managing serious mental illness and eating disorders in schools.

-- Increasing our 5 Minute Mindfulness program to a national level through offering "Mental Fitness in a Box" classroom packs.

Mental Fitness offers a variety of Wellness Workshops for each of its four primary areas of engagement. Each session is strategically designed to recognize signs of emotional or behavioral disorders and to provide participants with simple, practical methods to effectively incorporate healthy coping skills into their individual circle of influence. In addition to Wellness Workshops, Mental Fitness provides activities and tools that are easily integrated into existing programs and initiatives. All available items have been carefully selected and validated by mental health researchers and professionals to serve as beneficial tools that help reduce stress and improve behavior.

Mental Fitness works in collaboration with partner agencies and focuses on collective impact as its primary way of building capacity.

Since its inception, the methods and models provided through Mental Fitness have been published in peer-reviewed medical journals due to their success at managing mental health disorders in schools and increasing resilience in youth. In Spring 2020, Mental Fitness launched a revised implementation structure that fully engages researchers and mental health professionals in a collaborative effort to incorporate healthy coping skills in existing community programs by providing easily accessible resources that improve quality of life.

Financials

Mental Fitness Inc.
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Mental Fitness Inc.

Board of directors
as of 8/31/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Samantha Nicholson

Mental Fitness, inc.

Term: 2018 - 2020

Valerie Barnet

Robyn Hussa Farrell

Mental Fitness Inc

Patricia Leavy

Samantha Nicholson

Crystal Pace

Patricia Leavy

Jada Kidd Robinson

Selena Turnipseed

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 12/17/2019

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

No data

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data