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Cartwright Receives $75,000 Grant Package to Support Mental Health Among Students, Staff

The Cartwright School District today received a $75,000 grant package from the Thiru Family Trust Momentum Maker Foundation to implement an array of programs and activities to support mental health and well-being among students and staff.

“We are very thankful and grateful for these funds,” said Cartwright Superintendent Dr. LeeAnn Aguilar-Lawlor. “Mental health support is a top priority not only for our scholars, but our staff, too.”

Lawlor said the grant is extremely helpful because public schools must use state funds primarily to tackle academic achievement.

She added that Cartwright has counselors at each of its 20 schools, as well as a robust Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) program to strengthen the self-awareness, self-control and interpersonal skills that are vital for students to succeed in school, work and life.

Cartwright was selected among 30 proposals that were submitted by educational institutions (including private and charter schools) throughout the state.

Cartwright will use the funds in part to host student assemblies among its 7th- and 8th-  grade students to address mental health issues such as stress, anxiety and bullying. Cartwright will work to secure noted guest speakers to underscore that mental health topics should be openly discussed and not stigmatized.

In addition, the District will apply funds to strengthen partnership efforts with Teen Lifeline, a suicide prevention nonprofit organization and 24/7 crisis peer hotline for teens.

Specifically, SEL counselors will work with Teen Life to ensure district policies and practices are aligned with the organization’s current research and guidelines to improve mental health across the district.

Cartwright will also leverage funds to partner with M2 Well-Being to provide a mobile unit at schools and district sites for staff to improve their mental health and well-being through calming workshops, classes and exercises.

M2 Well-Being is the state’s only mobile “mindfulness” studio and one of the nation’s first that provides on-site resources and tools to improve mental health and well-being. 

The Thiru Family Trust Momentum Maker Grant is part of the Blue Cross® Blue Shield® of Arizona Foundation for Community & Health Advancement, which focuses on mental health, substance abuse, chronic health conditions and health equity in Arizona.