Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services are holding a dinner and fundraiser Tuesday, November 15 to benefit their new facility serving children, adolescents and young adults.

The dinner will feature the former Michigan Department of Community Health Director, Jim Haveman, as the Van Den Berg Leadership Award Recipient.

Today’s headlines are filled with stories of children and adolescents in crisis. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, suicide is the second leading cause of death in youth ages 15-24. The new building at Pine Rest will help increase access to services for this population of vulnerable youth.

Pine Rest knows that half of all lifetime cases of mental illnesses begin by age 14, and three-quarters by age 24. Untreated mental illness contributes to alarming status in high school dropout, incarceration, self-harm and suicide rates.

Teens have the best chance of enjoying a satisfying and productive life when mental health conditions are diagnosed and treated early. Treatment helps young people perform better at school, graduate, secure employment and form stronger ties with peers and families.

At Pine Rest, teens can receive assessments, counseling, psychotherapy, and psychiatry on an outpatient basis. For teens who need more intensive care, they offer a hospital day program and inpatient treatment.

Warning signs of mental illness in children and teens include - withdrawal from social activities, seeming "down" for two weeks or longer, severe mood swings, drastic changes in behavior (also personality or sleep habits), seeming fearful for no apparent reason, excessive risk taking, self-harm, and threats or talk about suicide. More information can be found here.