McLean Hospital Receives Rare Impact Grant for Expansion of Webinar Series

Funding allows McLean to launch webinars focused on child and adolescent mental health

August 25, 2021

McLean Hospital’s Office of Education Outreach has received a grant from the Rare Impact Fund to expand its popular webinar series. With the funding, McLean will develop webinars focused on youth mental health and wellness for audiences in the U.S. and beyond. The series will guide teens, parents, educators, and coaches about best practices if they encounter a young person who might be struggling with their mental health.

Highlights

  • Grant presented by the Rare Impact Fund, the nonprofit affiliate of Rare Beauty, the beauty brand founded by Selena Gomez
  • Funding will enable McLean to bring mental health education to a growing audience of teens, parents, and educators

The Rare Impact Fund is the nonprofit affiliate of Rare Beauty, the beauty brand founded by Selena Gomez. Rare Beauty is distributing $1.2 million to McLean and seven other organizations to expand mental health services in educational settings.

According to Scott J. O’Brien, McLean’s director of Education Outreach, the grant will allow McLean to address the many mental health challenges facing teens and young adults.

“Half of all cases of mental illness begin by age 14, and science tells us that identifying mental health conditions early in life changes outcomes,” he stated. “McLean Hospital is deeply invested in helping teens, parents, educators, and others recognize symptoms and understand the importance of addressing conditions such as depression, anxiety, and trauma disorders.”

Young teen sits outside colorful wall with other teens who are talking
The grant from Rare Impact will allow McLean to address the many mental health challenges facing children, teens, and young adults

The new webinar series aims to educate and inspire young people and those who support them. “Our goals are to encourage compassion for those struggling with their mental health, debunk misinformation, and help people understand how to start a conversation if someone they know may be struggling,” O’Brien said.

According to Adriana M. Bobinchock, McLean’s chief of staff and co-director of Education Outreach, the grant allows the hospital to enhance and expand its already successful webinar series, which is regularly viewed in more than 100 countries.

“In 2020, we launched free, monthly mental health webinars as part of our efforts to provide timely and relevant mental health and wellness information to the public during the pandemic,” she explained. “Immediately following the initial webinar, our audience grew, and we began producing the webinars on a weekly basis.”

Bobinchock reported that the webinar series initially focused on “educating a general audience from younger people to older adults, from blue collar workers to doctors and lawyers.”

However, she said, the Education Outreach team “quickly learned that many health care providers and school counselors were attending our sessions, particularly those who work with children and adolescents who were trying to learn as much as they could about how to best care for their patients.”

The Rare Impact funding, Bobinchock stated, will enable McLean to better serve this growing audience and meet the demand for information and support regarding mental health for young people.

“We believe there is a significant opportunity to reach a broader audience, delivering expert information about mental health in a relevant, engaging, and culturally sensitive manner to young people, and the people who support them, including parents and other trusted adults,” she said.

Sign up for the next mental health webinar, or get access to previous webinars on demand. Register Now!

Media Requests

Journalist or member of the media?
We are available 24/7 for media requests.