January 2024

The Trust Annual Report is Now Available

Welcome to the latest Trust newsletter. The first edition of the new year begins with a recap of the previous one for the Trust.

We recently released our latest Annual Report, in which we share a review of our FY23 grantmaking and policy work, revenue generation, activities on Trust lands, management of our assets, and more. The report also features highlights of some key initiatives and a letter from our CEO and Board Chair. It is a useful resource for anyone who wants to know more about our mission at Trust and how we're improving outcomes for Trust beneficiaries.

We invite you to read our report, which you can access through the link below or on our website homepage: alaskamentalhealthtrust.org.

Read the 2023 Trust Annual Report

In addition to our annual report, each year the Trust also releases a comprehensive Grant Investment Report that lists each grant award made in a fiscal year. The FY23 report demonstrates the breadth of Trust grantmaking and illustrates our commitment to supporting beneficiary-serving organizations, including service providers, Tribal entities, state and local government agencies, nonprofits, and others. You can learn more about projects supported through Trust grants as well as find information about applying for Trust grant funding on our grants webapge.

Read our FY23 Grant Investment Report

January is Mental Wellness Month

Mental and physical health are crucial to our well-being. Our mental and emotional health affects how we think, feel, and act, and also impacts how we manage stress and relate to others. The Trust works closely with organizations across the state to help ensure Alaskans have access to essential mental health care and treatment services.  

January is National Mental Wellness Month, a great time to learn more about the importance of mental health. You can find strategies for improving your emotional health in this toolkit from the team at the National Institutes of Health at the link below.

Visit the Toolkit

Trust Rural Outreach in the Yukon Kuskokwim Region

In November the Trust sponsored a group of 24 partners on an outreach trip to the Yukon Kuskokwim region. This Trust Rural Outreach Trip offered communities the chance to talk directly to state policymakers and leaders about serving Trust beneficiaries, and supported a greater understanding of the rich culture, strengths, and needs in the region. In addition to visiting several beneficiary-serving organizations in Bethel, trip participants also traveled to the communities of Toksook Bay, Kwethluk, St. Mary’s and Napakiak. It is our hope that the trip’s activities improved connections between participants and community partners, and increased awareness of resources available and needed to support Trust beneficiaries, communities, and organizations in the YK delta.

We are so grateful for the support of the Yukon Kuskokwim Health Corporation, the Association of Village Council Presidents, and other regional partners in planning and hosting this trip, and to all the organizations and individuals who engaged during the trip to share their perspectives.

Trust lands support a new housing project for Trust beneficiaries in Sitka

Trust partners at the Sitka Homeless Coalition are constructing a Cabin Community, named Hítxʼi Sáani (Little Houses), consisting of 12 individual units and a community building on Trust lands. In FY23, the board of trustees approved a long-term lease below market value for this permanent supportive housing project, which will house chronically homeless Trust beneficiaries and offer services through provider agencies. In addition to the use of Trust lands, the Trust supported this project with contracted technical assistance that helped develop concept drawings and financial planning for sustainability. 

The Trust Land Office will occasionally lease lands below market value for beneficiary-serving purposes when projects and market considerations allow, and when doing so is considered in the best interest of the Trust and its beneficiaries. Such leases are considered Program-Related Real Estate and must be approved by the board of trustees and follow a process outlined in Trust regulation, including the consideration of public comments. 

Rendering courtesy of Sitka Homeless Coalition

Grant Highlight: Salvation Army Alaska's Booth Transitional Housing Facility in Anchorage

The board of trustees recently approved a $200,000 grant to Salvation Army Alaska to support a remodel of their Booth facility in Anchorage that accommodates adult women experiencing a substance use disorder.

Salvation Army's Booth facility's transitional housing model allows beneficiaries transitioning from higher levels of care to remain in the community as they continue treatment and offers additional wrap-around services related to employment, family care, and long-term housing. This project will also expand access to care in Alaska by opening 32 new beds for Trust beneficiaries stepping down from acute care facilities.

This grant aligns with the Trust's Mental Health and Addiction Intervention focus area, which is focused on the full continuum of care from prevention and early intervention to treatment and recovery. 

Booth Facility photo courtesy of Salvation Army Alaska

Mat-Su Older Adult Behavioral Health Needs Assessment 

In coordination with our partners at the Mat-Su Council on Aging and the Mat-Su Health Foundation, the Trust commissioned an Older Adult Behavioral Health Needs Assessment in the Mat-Su. There is community interest in understanding how many older adults may need behavioral health services in the region, and how many are impacted by loneliness and isolation. Social needs were also explored, with financial instability intersecting with behavioral health conditions. 

The assessment examines the determinants of behavioral health, and the demographics and mental health status of older adults in the region. The report also includes recommendations to help older residents with mental well-being including those related to meeting basic needs, behavioral health, and social connections. The Trust is pleased to share this information and considers it an additional tool for program planning and advocacy to ensure all Alaskans have access to behavioral health services in their home communities. 

Read the Assessment

Get the Latest in Efforts to Improve Crisis Response

You can access our latest Implementation Update (December 2023) relating to our work with the State and partners to improve our behavioral health crisis system of care in Alaska on our web page. These brief reports look at updates by community, as well as system-wide news; an archive of prior editions can be found at alaskamentalhealthtrust.org/crisisnow.

Read the Update

Upcoming Trust Meetings

The next regular meeting of our board of trustees will be on January 31 and February 1, 2024. All board meetings include an opportunity for public comments.

The next set of board committee meetings is scheduled for April 24-25, 2024.

Visit our website for more information about upcoming trustee board and committee meetings.

To stay up-to-date on issues important to Trust beneficiaries you can also tune in to the meetings of our statutory partner boards:

The Trust Announces $3.8 Million in Grants

In the second quarter of Fiscal Year 2024, the Trust awarded $3.8 million in grants to partners across Alaska.

“With a mission to improve the lives and circumstances of Trust beneficiaries, our grants help our partners implement system-level improvements such as bringing on new lines of service, accessing innovative training opportunities, and implementing data-driven approaches to improving Alaska’s system of care.” said Steve Williams, CEO of the Trust. “We are grateful for the work of all our grantees, and for our ability to support their important work across the state.”

You can read more about each project we supported with grant funds in our quarterly grant report.

Trust Quarterly Grant Report

Free Grant Writing

Workshops for Partners

The Trust is hosting two free, virtual grant writing workshops in February. These sessions are for individuals who support grant writing and proposal development for organizations serving Trust beneficiaries.

- Session 1 on Feb. 13 will focus on the "go/no-go" decision to apply for grants and evidence-based practice requirements.

- Session 2 on Feb. 14 will feature tips on organizing a smooth grant writing process and navigating State of Alaska grant programs.

Registration is required and on a first-come, first-served basis. Learn more and register here.

Join the Joint Advocacy Network

The Trust and our statutory advisory boards maintain an advocacy network that communicates with beneficiaries and their advocates on issues related to legislation and policy affecting Trust beneficiary groups, their families, providers, and program administrators. Through the network, beneficiaries and Trust partners can access information to support meaningful participation in public policy and funding decisions that impact them. Network activities include legislation tracking and weekly teleconferences during the legislative session, as well as training for hands-on practice in advocating on issues you care about. Learn more about what this advocacy network entails and how you can join on our website.

Learn More


Trust Improving Lives Conference

September 17-18, 2024

Following our successful, inaugural conference in 2022, the next Trust Improving Lives Conference will be held in Anchorage at the Dena'ina Center on September 17-18, 2024. Mark your calendars and stay tuned for additional details that are coming soon!

TRUST GRANT OPPORTUNITIES: See if you're eligible and apply for grant opportunities today. Click to learn more.

Stay up to date with everything that's happening at the Trust by checking out the latest news, our public meeting calendar, and public notices on our website.



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