Newport residents and business owners came out in droves for Newport Mental Health’s 7th Annual Rock-the-Mansion gala recently, helping the agency gross over $150,000, much of which will be used for emergency shelter, bilingual translation services and outfitting clinician offices for the ever-growing people in need of mental health services in Newport County.

“The response to mental health in Newport County was overwhelming this year,” said CEO and President Jamie Lehane. “Julie Toland, former board member’s story as a parent of a son with schizophrenia, along with the surprise visit from U.S. Congressman David Cicilline were only a few of the compelling moments of the evening.” 

Lehane added that public support such as these help to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness and foster a community of acceptance, which in turn positions Newport County as a vital and thriving place to live and work. 

“This was such a powerful evening. Everyone there was talking freely about themselves, friends or family members that are or have been affected by mental health challenges,” said Development Committee Chair Madeline Turano. “They are now bringing these conversations to the forefront, like they would a physical illness. It’s so encouraging to witness.”  

The Presenting Sponsor of this year’s gala was J2 Construct. Other sponsors included Delta Consultants of South County, Horizon Pharmacy, LLC, Jay and Andrea Schachne, Joyce Kirby and Michael Greene.

Newport Mental Health, a federally Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic offers evidence-based mental health services to the 82,000 residents of Newport County, regardless of ability to pay. On an annual basis, NMH serves over 1,450 high risk adults and children at its five locations.

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Ryan Belmore has been the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp since 2012. He also currently works for Mountain News, where he serves as Senior Editor - North America for OnTheSnow. He previously worked for the New England Patriots and American Cancer Society. He currently serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).