New York City Expanding Access To Vital Mental Health Support Services

October 2, 2023

The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is releasing a new request for proposals to bring community services and supports to more New Yorkers living with serious mental illness.

The city will expand its commitment to the Clubhouse model described in the Mayor’s Care, Community, and Action Plan through a $30 million investment in state and city dollars to expand the model. This reflects a doubling of the current investment in Clubhouses.   

Clubhouses are important spaces that foster community for our friends, families and neighbors with serious mental illness,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan. “Thousands of people live with serious mental illness and are at increased risk for social isolation, which can be extremely harmful to mental health. Taking this first step to expand the availability of these critical hubs brings us closer to a healthier New York City.”

The Health Department anticipates an expansion in clubhouse membership of 3,750 individuals in addition to the 5,000 members already served through clubhouses. The request for proposals represents the City’s renewed commitment to enhancing clubhouse quality, improving member experience, and expanding referral pathways to support those with serious mental illness in finding a safe and productive experience in the community.

The deadline to apply is November 22, 2023 and funding will be awarded by July 1, 2024.

Clubhouses offer peer support, help finding employment and educational opportunities and connection to city resources in an environment that promotes autonomy. The model has been shown to reduce hospitalization and contact with the criminal legal system, and improve members’ health and wellness.

The clubhouse expansion was included in the Mayor’s Blueprint for Community Safety in recognition that safety and individual wellbeing are promoted through connection to supports and services.

The city’s mental health agenda, Care, Community, Action: A Mental Health Plan for New York City, released in March 2023, acknowledges the striking need for access to mental health resources and establishes supporting people with serious mental illness as a central pillar to the health of the city. Among those goals is a commitment to increase clubhouse capacity in high-need areas citywide through both City investments and public-private partnerships.

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