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51 Sherbrooke W., Montreal, QC. Canada, H5Z 4T9.
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Aspire Indiana is a Community Mental Health Center (CMHC) founded in 1966 in response to the community need for more comprehensive mental health services. Aspire provides behavioral health services that also address the social determinants of health, including employment and housing assistance, to underserved communities across Boone, Hamilton, Madison, and Marion counties in Central Indiana. Aspire reaches a wide variety of underserved populations, such as people experiencing homelessness, serious mental illness, or addiction, and those who are veterans, recently incarcerated, disabled, HIV positive, or low income.
In the early 2000s, Aspire recognized that addressing behavioral health alone was not enough; people with serious mental illness were dying an average of 20 years earlier than their peers due to untreated chronic health conditions like heart disease and diabetes. In response, in 2015 Aspire Indiana created a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC), Aspire Indiana Health, as a primary care provider. The two organizations work together to achieve whole health through addressing the behavioral, physical, and social determinants of health. Treating all aspects of health together results in better outcomes for those Aspire serves. With a sliding fee scale based on federal poverty income guidelines, every patient is treated, regardless of their ability to pay. Aspire serves a diverse population, and all Aspire staff are trained in cultural competence. It is Aspire’s goal to extend the lives of every client served, improve clients’ outlook, and serve as many clients as possible in order to better the community as a whole.
Our involvement: The Marty Tomberg Charitable Fund has financially supported this organization.
Projects We Support
Addressing Mental Health and Recovery Through Employment Support & Upskilling
This project intends to service an unmet need for impoverished clients struggling with mental illness and substance use. Although individuals in this group overwhelmingly express a desire to work (60% of those found to be unemployed by the National Alliance on Mental Illness) local and systemic barriers prevent them from accessing gainful employment. One of the major barriers is the increasing need for specialization and marketable skills, without which clients are unable to qualify for a wage status high enough to enable them to secure financial and environmental well-being, two SDoHs (social determinants of health) crucial to a client’s overall health. While Aspire already provides access to services for other SDoHs such as physical, mental, and emotional well-being via our primary, psychiatric, and addiction recovery services, Aspire does not currently offer a specialized path towards securing financial and environmental stability independent of those covered by the Medicaid Rehabilitation Option (MRO.)
This project would expand our capacity for care by enabling Aspire to provide 55 clients with an employment program tailored to their needs as individuals with mental illness and histories of substance abuse. While employment services available to the public do provide some work-readiness tests and career coaching, they lack the knowledge and support capabilities that Aspire is able to provide due to our close relationship with our clients and expertise in supporting individuals with mental illness and substance abuse history. In addition to career coaching and other typical employment services, Aspire will offer individualized plans for success, training for three specialized certificates, concurrent treatment for primary and psychiatric health needs, and work supplies such as interview-appropriate clothing, work shoes, and other supplies.
Support Dates: March, 2023 – Ongoing