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Overcoming challenges together

Rotary Club of Truro president Lech Krzywonos, left, executive director of Colchester East Hants branch of the Mental Health Association, Susan Henderson, and Rotarian Ken MacDonald recently gathered for a cheque presentation to CMHA by the local Rotary club.
Rotary Club of Truro president Lech Krzywonos, left, executive director of Colchester East Hants branch of the Mental Health Association, Susan Henderson, and Rotarian Ken MacDonald recently gathered for a cheque presentation to CMHA by the local Rotary club. - Contributed

BY ANNA RUTHERFORD

TRURO, N.S. —

What a milestone and significant gift! 
The Rotary Club of Truro has been a proud part of this community and of Rotary International since 1926. Rotary International is a global network of more than 1.2 million members who believe that great things happen when dedicated minds come together. We are community and business leaders representing different professions, experiences, and perspectives but with a shared desire to connect with others to address the challenges affecting our community and communities around the world. As a club we have a simple mandate: to help community members who are in need, break down barriers through assistance both financially and through acts of service. We focus on youth and individuals who are facing mental or physical challenges. 
As most folks in the community know by now, The Colchester East Hants branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) has been actively fundraising for their Branching Out Building Campaign. The goal of this $2-million campaign was to renovate the former Bargain Shop Building on Prince Street in Truro and adjacent vacant lot into a community mental health centre. 
“The community can expect to see a bright and beautiful space that provides opportunities for connection and recovery,” said Susan Henderson, executive director of the Colchester East Hants branch of CMHA. “The big new space will allow us to hold and host events the community can step into and enjoy, all while learning about and supporting positive mental health.”
The Rotary Club of Truro is thrilled to announce its $50,000 contribution to the Branching Out Building Campaign. As a donor, Rotary will be recognized with a named space in the new CHMA Building.
Rotary Club of Truro president Lech Krzywonos feels by investing in CMHA, Rotary is investing in the community. 
“Mental health and wellness is a part of all of our lives. At times any of us can be impacted by deteriorating mental health. Sometimes in acute and minor ways, and at times we may struggle with chronic and debilitating conditions,” said Krzywonos. “The Rotary Club of Truro is proud to invest in the community through the CMHA to provide first class mental health supports.” 
Rotarians are like-minded individuals who are passionate about making this community a better place for all who reside and visit here. Assisting in the development of services that will provide much needed resources to community members is a large part of why Rotary exists. The Rotary Club of Truro is looking forward to the positive change that this new space will bring to the community.
“The $50,000 donation from Rotary means the world to us,” said Henderson. “It will allow us to bring mental health support to more individuals in our community - and with Rotary's focus on youth, it will help to provide connection and intervention when it is most needed.  We all remember the difficult teen years and given that 70 per cent of mental illnesses manifest in adolescence, we can provide important and timely intervention.”
CMHA has been a part of our community since 1985. It is one of many branches across Canada that provide a wide range of innovative services and supports to people who are experiencing mental illness, and their families. These services are tailored to the needs and resources of the communities where they’re based. One of the core goals of these services is to help people with mental illness develop the personal tools to lead meaningful and productive lives. 
“CHMA are the feet on the ground who can direct services to those most in need. In essence, the community helping the community,” said Krzywonos. 
After months of hard work, the team at CMHA will be opening their doors for a grand opening on World Mental Health Day, Oct. 10. 
“I am most looking forward to the partnerships and opportunities this new space affords,” said Henderson. “Everyone has mental health and we are so excited to create a place for anyone who is working to improve their mental wellness.”

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