While studying mental health in spring 2018, HUGHF contributed to multiple outreach and advocacy efforts.
HUGHF’s advocacy directors Anthony Zhong ’21 and Max Ho ’21 organized a letter-writing drive through which HUGHF members wrote to the Massachusetts Committee of Health Care Financing in support of Bill H. 3595, the Act Relative to Improving Mental Health Through Innovation. The bill would create a special fund within the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health dedicated to researching and advancing best practices for mental illness and brain-based disorders. With a growing mental health burden in our country, advancing quality care is critical. The bill remains active in the Massachusetts legislature.
Our advocacy directors also spearheaded our care package fundraiser. Harvard students had the opportunity to order HUGHF’s “Mental Health Care Packages” for their friends to wish them well amidst the stress of spring term. Our 137 care packages delivered teddy bears, chocolate, and reminders of mental health resources across campus and raised $141 for Strong Minds Africa. Strong Minds Africa funds and organizes depression treatment for women in Uganda. HUGHF itself added $100 to the donation, contributing $241 total to the cause. The fundraiser allowed HUGHF to uplift spirits on campus while supporting mental health abroad – tying together local and global health.
Finally, HUGHF was a student group sponsor of the Global Mental Health conference in April, an event meant to invigorate enthusiasm on campus for addressing global mental health and to bring together those working on the issue across the University’s schools. HUGHF looks forward to continuing to support global mental health.