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August 25, 2019Cart

Business

by Fairfield County Business Journal
by FCBJ

Friends of Pediatrics gift supports teen mental health programs

From left: Donna Twist, vice president, development, Bridgeport Hospital Foundation; Heather Kreitler, president, Friends of Pediatrics; and Charles Morgan, chair, department of psychiatry and behavioral health, Bridgeport Hospital.

The Fairfield-based fundraising group Friends of Pediatrics has presented a gift of $50,000 to support the care of adolescents and young adults in Bridgeport Hospital’s REACH Outpatient Psychiatry Program. 

The gift was presented by Heather Kreitler, Friends of Pediatrics president, to Charles Morgan, chair, department of psychiatry and behavioral health, Bridgeport Hospital, and Donna Twist, vice president, development, Bridgeport Hospital Foundation.

“Teens and young adults are high risk for mental illness,” said Morgan. “This is especially true of young people living in distressed communities like Bridgeport. Programs like REACH provide a safe forum for teens to discuss their concerns and learn ways to address them.”

The REACH adolescent program offers support groups and other interventions for teens experiencing low self-esteem, anxiety, depression, social isolation or mood swings who may be avoiding school or have thoughts of harming themselves. The support groups, run by a clinical social worker, help the teens acquire skills, strategies and techniques to address their condition while offering an opportunity to make safe, healthy choices during their day-to-day activities and interactions.

Friends of Pediatrics and its predecessor group, Woman’s Staff for Children’s Ward at Bridgeport Hospital, has supported the medical and behavioral care of children and adolescents in greater Bridgeport since it was established in 1893, less than a decade after Bridgeport Hospital first opened its doors.