Meet our Staff: Video Series
A new video series highlights the work we do through the voices of our staff. Taken together, they show the breadth of services we offer to our clients -- from family therapy services for young children and their families, medication management and therapy for adults, to help finding and succeeding at work. Check out the videos on our YouTube channel.
Lindsay Coffey, LPC
Child & Family Clinician
Dr. Mariam Garuba, Psychiatrist
Luke Hobbs, Vocational Specialist
Recruiting Apprentices for
Alaska Seeds of Change
Alaska Seeds of Change is recruiting apprentices! Apprentices learn vocational skills through work in our indoor hydroponic farm, and have access to mental health and other supports to help them meet life goals. Learn more here.

(Don't be scared: this photo was from Zombie spirit day, October 2019. They're actually a very friendly bunch).
Mental Illness Awareness Week Recap
Many thanks to those who participated in events to learn more and raise awareness during Mental Illness Awareness Week, October 4-10. Events included:
  • A free yoga class offered by Yoga for Mental Health
  • A training on domestic violence and mental health offered in partnership with AWAIC. Dr. Amber Chambers, PsychD of AKBH and Rebecca Piersch of AWAIC presented to more than 50 people via Zoom and Facebook live. If you missed it, you can watch it here through the end of October.
  • A panel discussion on mental health stigma, co-hosted with NAMI-Anchorage and the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority. Video of the panel is available here until the end of the month.
  • A compass piece in the Anchorage Daily News by our Board President Andrew Crow.

While Mental Illness Awareness Week is over for this year, our work continues year-round to raise awareness of the prevalence of mental illness and the challenges people living with mental illness face, and provide services to help clients improve their quality of life.
Supporting our staff:
SHARP Loan Repayment
Recruiting health care professionals in Alaska is always a challenge, and mental health is no exception. We are thankful that the State of Alaska applied for a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) designation for Anchorage, and re-opened the SHARP loan repayment program. Five clinical staff at AKBH were accepted to the program, and will collectively have $145,000 in school loans paid off over a two year period through the program!

We continue to lobby the State to apply for a HPSA designation for Fairbanks so Fairbanks staff can also qualify for the program.
ARC Training for Staff
More than 30 Child and Family clinical staff and students are being trained this month in Attachment, Regulation and Competency training (ARC) - an evidence-based clinical treatment model for children. Our in-house ARC trainers, Mara Hill, LPC, and Marissa Hanson, LCSW, are presenting the training in weekly Monday sessions. ARC is the leading clinical model for treating trauma in young children. Director of Child & Family Services Joshua Arvidson, LCSW, says providing initial and refresher ARC training for staff insures that we are offering high-quality clinical services to our youngest clients.

AKBH has been a certified ARC trainer since 2008, and provides training and implementation consultation for organizations that want to implement trauma-informed care in their practice. Learn more about our ARC training and consultation at AKBH.

Fairbanks Updates!
In September, more than 100 staff from the Fairbanks School District attended our Trauma 101 and “The Neuroscience of Traumatic Stress for Educators”, taught by Lindsay Coffey, LPC and Joshua Arvidson. The training was part of the AK RISES partnership to provide services to students in 4 Fairbanks schools. Clinicians have been providing services remotely, but will begin moving into schools next week (after some COVID delays.)

The Fairbanks Child & Family clinic is also holding a new teen Identity group on Fridays, and enjoying their new paved parking lot.

The Fairbanks Adult Team has begun offering Peer Support Services, with staff hired and finishing up orientation. Peer support is an evidence-based practice that has been shown to increase engagement in services and quality of life. It Helps keep mental health care costs down by keeping people involved in outpatient care and reducing the need for inpatient care. Read more here.

Fairbanks staff have also begun work under the Projects for Assistance in Transition from Homelessness (PATH) program - outreaching to people in the Fairbanks area experiencing both homelessness and mental illness. AKBH also provides PATH services in Anchorage.

The Fairbanks clinic is excited about the addition of DBT group services provided out of the Fairbanks office to clients in both Anchorage and Fairbanks through telehealth. And our partnership with Genoa Pharmacy is expanding: a Genoa rep will now work on site in Fairbanks. Genoa has been serving Fairbanks clients for years; having an on-site rep takes that customer service one step further, and improves collaboration with our medical team.
Cohen Clinic Update
October Webinar: Building Resiliency in Military Youth
October 15th, 2:00 PM (AKDT), Virtual Event
 
Join the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Alaska Behavioral Health and partner organizations for presentations about building resiliency in military youth, specifically preteens and teens.
 
Topics include:
  • Nutrition and healthy winter activities
  • Mood awareness and self-correction
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
  • Positive decision making

Follow us on social media for updates @cohenclinicak. Email June Ruda (jruda@akbh.org) to register.

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Alaska Coalition for Veteran and Military Families
Cohen clinic staff will be presenting at the 2nd Annual Alaska Veterans & Military Families Summit, October 20-21. The summit is free and open to the public and is a great way to become familiar with resources available for military families in Alaska. Clinic Director Mary Beth Goodman will participate in a panel discussion on evidence-based practices and give an overview of the Clinic and their services. Register here
Veterans Day Drive Through Event!
Due to the COVID-pandemic, the Cohen Clinic was not able to welcome the community with a big grand opening celebration. Instead, members of the public are invited to a drive-through event on Veterans Day, November 11! Stop by the Clinic for info, give aways, and the chance to win some cool prizes. Stay tuned for more info!