March 2019
Happy March, Empowering Minds community! This month's newsletter includes information on Women's History Month and Professional Social Work Month, an article on fighting the winter blues as winter drags on through March, exciting agency updates, and more!
This month, Empowering Minds celebrates the many accomplishments and achievements of women throughout history. We recognize historical and current sexism. And, we honor the community activism and dedicated leaders, who have advocated for and continue to empower women worldwide.

Here are some ways you can join us in celebrating women’s history month!

  • Thank a woman who inspires you. Write her a letter. Send her a message on Facebook. Send her a gif of appreciation.

  • Read books about historical women. Like Michelle Obama's Becoming, Rachel Ignotofsky's Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World, or Roxane Gay's Bad Feminist Essays.

  • Watch a documentary about women's struggles. Like She's Beautiful When She's Angry, Missrepresentation, and Period. End of Sentence.

8 Scientifically-Backed Ways to Beat the Winter Blues

When your mood is falling as fast as the thermometer, these small lifestyle changes may help boost your spirits.
If you’re starting to feel like nothing but a very full, very strong pot of coffee will get you out of bed, join the club. Holiday bills are high, temperatures are low, and the days are way too short. Here, scientifically proven ways to lift your spirits and ease the mid-winter doldrums.

1. Make your environment brighter.
When your body is craving more daylight,  sitting next to an artificial light —also called a light box—for 30 minutes per day  can be as effective  as antidepressant medication. Opening blinds and curtains, trimming back tree branches, and sitting closer to windows can also help provide an extra dose of sunshine.

2. Eat smarter.
Certain foods, like  chocolate , can help to enhance your mood and relieve anxiety. Other foods, like  candy and carbohydrates  provide temporary feelings of euphoria, but could ultimately increase feelings of anxiety and depression.

3. Simulate dawn.
People with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a form of depression that usually begins in late fall or early winter and fades as the weather improves,  may feel  depressed, irritable, lethargic, and have trouble waking up in the morning—especially when it’s still dark out.  Studies show  that a  dawn simulator , a device that causes the lights in your bedroom to gradually brighten over a set period of time, can serve as an antidepressant and make it easier to get out of bed.

4. Exercise.
A 2005 study from  Harvard University  suggests walking fast for about 35 minutes a day five times a week or 60 minutes a day three times a week improved symptoms of mild to moderate depression. Exercising under bright lights may be even better for seasonal depression: A  preliminary study  found that exercise under bright light improved general mental health, social functioning, depressive symptoms, and vitality, while exercise in ordinary light improved vitality only. Try these  mood boosting workouts .

5. Turn on the tunes.
In a  2013 study , researchers showed that listening to upbeat or cheery music significantly improved participant’s mood in both the short and long term.

6. Plan a vacation.
Longing for sunnier days at the beach?  Research shows  that the simple act of planning a vacation causes a significant increase in overall happiness.

7. Help others.
Ladling out soup at the local shelter or  volunteering  your time can improve mental health and life satisfaction.

8. Get outside.
Talking yourself into taking a walk when the temperatures plummet isn’t easy, but the  benefits are big : Spending time outside (even when it’s chilly!) can improve focus, reduce symptoms of SAD, and lower stress levels.


Code Blue Extreme Cold Alert Information
The Health Commissioner declares a Code Blue Extreme Cold Alert during periods of extremely cold weather. Code Blue Extreme Cold is a multi-agency effort to reduce hypothermia deaths during the winter months by protecting our City's homeless, seniors and other vulnerable populations.

A Code Blue Extreme Cold declaration triggers several responses aimed at providing shelter and services for homeless individuals.
  • Private homeless shelters will be encouraged to extend their hours and keep individuals indoors.
  • Homeless Services Outreach Workers provide cold weather education, encourage homeless individuals to take shelter, and connect them to services as needed.
  • On nights when Code Blue Extreme Cold has been declared, the Salvation Army FEEDMORE canteen provides hot drinks and other items to homeless individuals.
A list of  City Homeless Shelters and Services  is available through the Mayor's Office of Human Services. 

Don't forget to turn your clocks forward an hour on March 10th!
March is also recognized as National Professional Social Work Month.

There are 682,000 social workers in schools, hospitals, mental health facilities, clinics, and community organizations nationwide. Social workers work with the individual, the community, society, and national and international dynamics and policies to advocate, empower, and liberate! Celebrate a social worker in your life!
Empowering Minds is proud to partner with ShareBaby

Our partnership includes monthly diaper distributions for EMRC clients with children between the ages of 0 - 5 years old.  In addition, EMRC is currently accepting "ShareBaby Coat Requests" for children ages 0 - 5 years old and requests for Boy or Girl newborn bundles.

Newborn bundles include:
1 pack of size 1 diapers
1 pack of size 2 diapers
1 0-3 month onesie
1 0-3 month outfit (top & bottom)
1 3-6 month onesie
1 3-6 month outfit (top & bottom)
1 6-12 month onesie,
1 6-12 month outfit (top & bottom)

 If you are in need of diapers, a coat or newborn bundle for a child between 0 - 5 years old, please contact your  Direct Service Coordinator  to submit your request and provide the sex of the baby and size needed between 0 - 24 months or 2t - 5t. If you have any questions, please contact Katie Tyminski at the Baltimore City office.
Three Historic Female Social Workers
Barbara Mikulski was the first Democratic woman to serve in both the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate, the first woman to win a Maryland statewide election, and the longest serving woman in the history of Congress. Before serving in Congress, Mikulski worked as a social worker with youth in Baltimore and prevented the construction of a 16-lane highway that would have cut through the first black home ownership neighborhood in Baltimore.
Jeannette Rankin graduated from a School of Social Work and became the first woman elected to the U.S. Congress. Her first act was to introduce an amendment for women's suffrage, which passed a year later.

Jane Addams founded one of the first settlement houses and received the 1931 Nobel Peace Prize. Addams’ social work served immigrants and individuals and families experiencing poverty. She became the president of the Women's Peace Party and of the Women's International Peace Congress at the Hague.

You can learn about other famous social workers here .
Harford County Group
Baltimore City Groups
Mondays 6-7 PM 
Women's Group, Teen's Group, and Youth Group

Tuesdays 6-7 PM
Men's Group

Thursdays 12-1 PM
Families Impacted by Substance Abuse
Anne Arundel County Groups

Empowering Minds Resource Center is proud to announce there is currently  NO WAIT LIST at the agency. We work hard everyday to ensure referrals are quickly processed and clients are engaged by our staff and partnered therapists immediately. We are ready, willing and able to accept new clients TODAY.  

Empowering Minds Resource Center has no waitlist for our CARE COORDINATION FOR MINORS and our PSYCHIATRIC REHABILITATION PROGRAM in Harford County

Empowering Minds recognizes Nkwa McCarthy as Direct Service Coordinator of the Month for her dedication to her clients, timeliness in submission of documentation, and her positive and generous attitude. Congratulations, Nkwa !


Empowering Minds is looking to add some new members to our wonderful team. Check out the link below for more information!