Northern Lakes plans Anniversary Open Houses in October!

 A series of open houses for the community is planned this October at Northern Lakes CMH.

One per week, the events are slated for:

  1. Thursday, October 3 in Houghton Lake (2715 South Townline Road),
  2. Thursday, October 10 in Grayling (204 Meadows Drive),
  3. Wednesday, October 16 in Cadillac (527 Cobbs Street), and
  4. Thursday, October 24 in Traverse City (105 Hall Street).

All the open houses will be from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

We are celebrating our 10th Anniversary as well as the 50th Anniversary of President Kennedy’s signing of the Community Mental Health Act of 1963, which paved the way for CMH organizations such as ours to exist.

Greg Paffhouse, CEO said, “This is a significant event in the history of our organization. It is a lucky coincidence that our own anniversary is also a significant year in the history of the mental health field in our country. We are excited to invite our community members and stakeholders to share this special time with us. We will be closing for business at 4:00 p.m. at each of our open houses so our staff may offer tours of our buildings. We invite everyone to join us in this special celebration.”

The CMH Act was put in place in October, 1963, only one month before Kennedy’s assassination. The law symbolized a new era of delivering care to millions of Americans in need. It established CMH centers throughout the country and allowed individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities who were institutionalized to move back to their communities. The legislation also allowed for inclusion, independence, and equality among this community of individuals, which helped those with disabilities and mental health disorders to lead normal lives.

The open houses will feature historical displays, including a special 22-panel collage that traces 3000 years of seldom-told history for persons with developmental and mental health disabilities. From antiquity to the present, the 40-foot display brings viewers through an illustrated timeline that shows society’s attitudes and their effects on the lives of people with disabilities.

Northern Lakes CMH was formed in 2003 as a result of merging North Central CMH and Great Lakes CMH. The organization serves thousands of people with mental illness, intellectual/developmental disability and substance use disorder annually across a six-county area.

In Grayling, a significant office renovation project which took place earlier this year will be unveiled. Northern Lakes CMH expanded its building into space previously occupied by the District Health Department #10 and added 2,800 square feet of community meeting space, integrated health space, and an elevator.

In Traverse City, recent building renovations will be highlighted which are now allowing an on-site primary health clinic to be operated by Traverse Health Clinic for people served by Northern Lakes CMH.

Tours begin at 4:00 p.m.