1 in 5 Americans experience mental illness each year.

Mental health is an aspect of healthcare that is often neglected, particularly when the person in need of care is living in poverty. The stress of impoverishment (issues with housing, income flow, relationships, and substance abuse) impacts the entire household. In fact, studies have shown that children who grow up in poverty are more likely to suffer from long-term mental health problems as adults.

More than a quarter of our patients are coping with a diagnosis of a mental illness or a substance abuse issue, ranging from clinical depression or anxiety to more severe problems like schizophrenia. Beyond medical diagnosis, we estimate that a vast majority of our clients are coping with some sort of mental health difficulty, as the situational stress of poverty impacts all who come through our doors.

We’re doing something about it:

  • This year, we’ve developed a Behavioral Health Program to administer targeted interventions for patients with mental health concerns such as depression, anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain, or substance abuse.
  • Our Representative Payee Program manages the finances of 800 Department of Mental Health clients, so that they may continue to lead independent lives despite their mental health struggles and disabilities.

With your help, we can continue to ensure that DC’s poorest families
get the mental health treatment and care they need.
Make a gift to Bread for the City here.

Read more stats on mental health in DC here.