The White House launched Creating Community Solutions (CCS) in 2013 to bring mental illness out of the shadows. It chose Kansas City one of a handful of lead cities in the national dialogue on mental health. Mayors Sly James and Mark Holland are co-sponsors and Consensus is project director for CCS-KC.
On September 21, 2013, we brought together more than 360 participants and volunteers. They spent the day finding strategies to improve mental health, especially among young people. More than half the group faced personal mental health challenges.
After that, our planning team developed a broad action plan and strategies. In 2015, five action teams are conducting research and developing detailed proposals. The planning team will work with local funders and community members to put the action plan in place.
In 2014, the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) named Creating Community Solutions its project of the year, and in 2015, CCS was named a finalist for the Ash Innovations Award for Public Engagement in Government. That award is presented by the Harvard Kennedy School’s Ash Center.