Mary Brougher Mental Health Initiative

Build a mental fitness routine and become a
mental health advocate.

It’s time we recognize mental health as a part of overall wellness.

  • 1 in 4 Adults have a Mental Health Disability.
  • 7 of 10 Teens Report Mental Health Struggles.
  • Suicide is the second leading cause of death in young people between the ages of 15-24.
  • Students with disabilities are at increased risk of being bullied. Bullying is linked to mental health concerns and increased risk for suicide related behavior.
  • Only 20% of Youth with Mental Health Disabilities Receive Care from Mental Health Providers.
Program Objectives

Mental Fitness Training

  • Become empowered to talk about Mental Health.
  • Engage in Healthy Mind Habits that build skills in self-compassion, coping, and resiliency.
  • Learn to identify and understand emotions and what they tell us.
  • Explore where thoughts come from and how to process them in a healthy way.

Mental Health Advocacy

  • Understand what it means to be an advocate.
  • Learn about current civil rights issues for people with mental health disabilities.
  • Hear presentations from community partners about mental health advocacy.
  • Explore actions that youth advocates can take to bring about change that addresses stigma of mental health.

#NotAshamed Campaign

  • Reduce stigma around mental health disabilities.
  • Empower youth with mental health disabilities to take pride in who they are.
  • Create a community of allies dedicated to ending myths around mental health disability.
  • Celebrate the intersectionality of the lived experience and mental health disability.
#NotAshamed Logo
Workplace Applications

Mental fitness and advocacy strategies build skills and competencies valued in today’s workforce.

Leadership Skills


Ability to Overcome Challenges

Problem Solving

Responding to Criticism

Relationship Building

Conflict Resolution


Civic Engagement

Mary Brougher: A Life Lived with Purpose
A Life Lived with Purpose
Mary Brougher - Signing I love you

Mary Brougher served as the President of Bender Consulting Services, Inc. and as a Board Director for Bender Leadership Academy.

She was a founding team member of the original volunteer program and was instrumental in early curriculum development and program oversight.

A visionary, Mary dedicated her life to bringing down barriers and eradicated stigma for people with disabilities. A woman living with mental health disability, Mary was a strong advocate for others to talk about mental health and take action to educate others about mental health disabilities.

We must create a world where mental fitness conversations are as commonplace as those about nutrition and exercise. It is only by sharing the message that both mental and physical fitness are a part of quality of life that we can break down stigma.
Mary Brougher
Ways to be Involved
  • Submit a video as a part of our #NotAshamed campaign
  • Enroll for Bender Leadership Academy programming (available for youth with disabilities)
  • Apply to become a volunteer speaker (subjects include mental health and disability advocacy, mental wellness, career readiness, and leadership)
  • Become a funder
  • Become a community partner

Contact Us