L-C Valley Healthcare Foundation Funds U of I Extension Mental Health Training
December 23, 2020
MOSCOW, Idaho — Dec. 22, 2020 — A grant from the Lewis-Clark Valley Healthcare Foundation will help University of Idaho Extension expand mental health first-aid training and suicide prevention efforts across the state.
The foundation recently awarded $40,000 to U of I to train 10 county Extension educators in the Question, Persuade and Refer Suicide Awareness Program. They, in turn, will train others to assess when people should seek further help for someone who is having difficulties.
“Even though we are not mental health professionals, we can educate to raise awareness of suicide, help individuals recognize warning signs when friends and family members may be considering suicide and can refer individuals and families to professionals where they can receive help,” U of I Extension Director Barbara Petty said.
“This grant is a great example of the many important projects the foundation funds each year,” Idaho Trust Bank CEO Thomas Prohaska said. Idaho Trust Bank is the trustee of the foundation. Since 2017, foundation has funded more than 150 grants exceeding $2.2 million in Idaho, Washington and Oregon.
The funding will allow U of I Extension to expand its mental health and suicide prevention training in the state’s five north-central counties, including Latah, Nez Perce, Clearwater, Lewis and Idaho. Extension educators serve residents in all 44 Idaho counties.
The funding will build on a university program established earlier in southern Idaho.
The foundation also serves Whitman, Asotin and Garfield counties in neighboring Washington state and Wallowa County in Oregon.
The foundation was established in 2017 after Ascension Health sold the St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Lewiston to a subsidiary of RCCH HealthCare Partners. Ascension Health agreed to transfer $23 million of the $75 million net proceeds into a healthcare foundation that would be administered for the benefit of communities within the hospital’s service area.
As a gesture of goodwill, the new for-profit owner, RCCH, also agreed to donate $2 million, bringing the foundation’s total principal balance to $25 million.
Science writer, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho, home of the Vandals, is Idaho’s land-grant, national research university. From its residential campus in Moscow, U of I serves the state of Idaho through educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls, nine research and Extension centers, plus Extension offices in 42 counties. Home to nearly 11,000 students statewide, U of I is a leader in student-centered learning and excels at interdisciplinary research, service to businesses and communities, and in advancing diversity, citizenship and global outreach. U of I competes in the Big Sky and Western Athletic conferences. Learn more at uidaho.edu