I ride to support Children's Hospital Colorado for its efforts in improving child and adolescent mental health and I am grateful to the Children's Foundation for its support of my community, patients, students, and lab (www.emodev.org).
The Pediatric Mental Health Institute (PMHI) at Children's Colorado served more than 7,700 children in 2020. The Outpatient Clinic had 24,760 visits; 8,387 of these visits were telehealth visits to which PMHI had to pivot to accommodate the ever-changing landscape of the mental health crisis due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The suicide rate in Colorado is now 2nd highest in the nation and suicide is the leading cause of death in Colorado for kids ages 10-14. One in five youth are affected by mental illness and only one of three of those affected receive mental health services. On average, youth struggle with symptoms of mental health issues for eight to 10 years before accessing care. We know that early access to quality mental health care significantly improves outcomes, so we need to let families know it is necessary to speak up and seek services for their children.
Courage Classic aims to drive awareness and financial support for the care of children and families who require early prevention, ongoing therapy, and access to the medical professionals who can make a difference for kids who need it most…for the kids who have a much larger mountain to climb.
The Courage Classic is not only a personal challenge, but also an opportunity to support positive outcomes and healthier futures for children.