On Saturday, April 29, 2023, DBSA WV co-sponsored the second annual “Kickin’ It for Katy” 5k run/1.2 mile Walk for suicide prevention. The event took place on the campus of Fairmont State University, where the goal was to raise $25,000 towards the Kaitlynn Jade Forensic Memorial Scholarship at the university. For our silver level sponsorship, we received a medium size banner at the race, mention at the podium following the race, our logo with DBSA on all event t-shirts, a listing on the “Kickin’ It for Katy” website and Facebook page, plus two free race/walk entries. We provided DBSA Support Group pamphlets and Suicide in America brochures for every racer and walker’s swag bags to increase awareness about our organization, and about the suicide epidemic in this country. Several participants visited our table following the race/walk during the “Stomp out the Stigma event which included live music, food, door prizes, and lots of raffles. DBSA provided information about who we are and what we do, especially through our support groups throughout the state and online via Zoom. Our display included literature on depression, depression in college students, anxiety, OCD, panic disorder and suicide. $10,400 was raised towards the scholarship, and we’re looking forward to the third annual event next year.
DBSA WV Participates in Food Drive
On Saturday, May 20, 2023, The Monongalia County Commission held a food drive at Mountaineer Mall in Morgantown, WV. Recipients drove their vehicles to the rear of the mall where food was distributed, and a variety of other free items were available. President Lynne Vespoint and Vice President Olivia Shuttleworth represented DBSA WV distributing DBSA pamphlets and DBSA WV pens to each driver while telling them about DBSA, including who we are and what we do. Information was shared about DBSA Mountaineer, our group at the office that meets the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month at 2:00. Many people expressed an interest in knowing more about our organization, plus the rain held off throughout the event.
DBSA WV Attends WV NASW Conference
The West Virginia Chapter of DBSA (DBSA WV) co-sponsored the WV NASW Conference that took place in Charleston, WV, May 3rd through 5th. President Lynne Vespoint, Vice President Olivia Shuttleworth, and Peer Facilitator for DBSA Charleston, Joe Belcher represented our organization at the event. Our theme was, ‘When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade.” Our booth had mini lemon trees, mini lemon truck, lemon stickers on the tablecloth and vases of Lemonheads candy and lemon stress balls. Over the course of the three-day event, we told social workers located throughout the state about our organization and resources available on National’s website. We had a poster with colorful Mood Crew characters on display so that social workers would know that there are resources for every age on the website. Every visitor at our booth received the DBSA Support Group brochure and a DBSA WV pen. There is interest in starting three more support groups in our state. We believe that this outreach project will be beneficial to the future of DBSA WV.
DBSA WV at the WVU Volunteer Fair Sponsored by the Center for Community Engagement
On Wednesday, February 8, 2023, DBSA WV, represented by Executive Director Mary Jane Simms and Office Manager Kathryn Madison participated in the WVU Volunteer Fair sponsored by the Center for Community Engagement. The event, which took place in the Mountain Lair, was a wonderful opportunity for our organization to meet many young adults who share our goals to help and support others living with depression or bipolar disorder. It was also an opportunity to network with other community partners and learn more about many other resources in our area. It was a great day!
DBSA WV Participated in The American Society for Suicide Prevention Walk Held Over the Weekend
DBSA WV staff and volunteers participated in The American Society for Suicide Prevention Walk on October 8th. Held at Krepps Park in Morgantown for the 5th year, the event provided an excellent opportunity to raise awareness and network. Pictured in the photos below from the event is Vance Soinski.
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s “Morgantown Out of the Darkness” Community Walk to Be Held on October 8th at Krepps Park
DBSA WV will be involved in American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s Community Walk to Fight Suicide – “Morgantown Out of the Darkness”. The Out of the Darkness Community Walk is a journey of remembrance, hope, and support. It unites our communities and provides an opportunity to acknowledge the ways in which suicide and mental health conditions have affected our lives and the lives of those we love and care about. The event will be held on October 8th at Krepps Park in Morgantown. You can register for the event online at afsp.org/Morgantown or in person beginning at 10 am on the day of the walk. There is no registration fee to participate and dogs on a leash are welcome to attend! The walk will begin at 11 am.
Resources for Support Group Facilitators
Welcome and thank you for helping peers improve their lives. Below you will find news and resources for Support Group Facilitators.
In 2022 PsychCentral ranked DBSA Support Groups “Best overall!”
Read the full article here.
Whether you are a new facilitator or an experienced one, raise your facilitation skills up to the next level by attending DBSA’s free, interactive Virtual Facilitator Training. Taught by experienced support group facilitators, this 8-hour introductory training class includes 2 – 3 separate sessions featuring lecture, question and answer segments and mock facilitator practice.
Participants must attend all sessions of a particular class to receive a certificate of participation. Please note that these training sessions are intended for peers who are working with a DBSA chapter or DBSA support group.
Available Sessions, Dates and Times:
|Intro Fac Training March||3/19 & 3/26||2pm – 6pm Eastern time|
|Intro Fac Training April||4/09 & 4/23||2pm – 6pm Eastern time|
|Facilitator Think Tank||4/14||8pm Eastern time|
|Intro Fac Training May||5/6 & 5/13||3pm – 7pm Eastern time|
|Facilitator Think Tank||5/12||8pm Eastern time|
|Facilitator Think Tank||6/9||8pm Eastern time|
|Intro Fac Training June||06/21, 06/23, 06/25||6-9pm Eastern time, Final class 6-8pm|
To Register for any of the above sessions, please email Jill at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please include the following: your full name, your chapter name, email address and chapter president or support group coordinator’s name and email.
Give us your Feedback! DBSA WV Support Group Experience Survey
Please let us know how we are doing by taking part in the short survey below about your support group experience with DBSA West Virginia! We are hoping that your anonymous feedback will help us improve our service and help illustrate the importance of our volunteer run groups for people living with mood disorders.
DBSA WV Statewide Headquarters Now Open in Morgantown!
The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) WV is pleased to announce the opening of its statewide headquarters at Mountaineer Mall, 5000 Greenbag Road in Morgantown.
Staff and volunteers will be available 11 am – 3 pm, Tuesday through Saturday. Fully vaccinated community members are encouraged to stop by to learn more about DBSA WV free peer support groups (for people with mood disorders and the people who love them) and to pick up educational materials and wellness tools.
For more information, call (304) 241- 1862 or email email@example.com.
DBSA Support Group Facilitator Virtual Training Sessions Offered
Whether you are a new facilitator or an experienced one, raise your facilitation skills up to the next level by attending DBSA’s free, interactive Virtual Facilitator Training. Taught by experienced support group facilitators, this 8-hour introductory training class includes 3 separate sessions featuring lecture, question and answer segments and mock facilitator practice.
Participants must attend all sessions of a particular class to receive a certificate of participation.
Available Sessions, Dates and Times:
|Intro Facilitator Training||1/21 & 1/28||3pm -7pm Eastern|
|Intro Facilitator Training||2/12 & 2/19||1pm – 5pm Eastern|
To Register for any of the above sessions, please e-mail Jill at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please include your full name, your chapter name and e-mail address.