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Leading With Gratitude

At the start of 2023, the Cypress team met to discuss our team norms. One of those norms was to “Lead with Gratitude.” We set out to do this every day, with our internal team, our external partners, and all of our training participants. And as I reflect on everything Cypress accomplished in 2023, “leading with gratitude” is such an easy thing to do! 


This year, we hosted 122 workshops and trainings. We trained more than 1,397 people in Mental Health First Aid, bringing our total since we started this project to over 4,500 Mental Health First Aiders! In addition, this year alone, more than 4,850 people attended our workshops on trauma-informed practice and grief recovery. We worked with health professionals and clinicians, case managers and promotoras, teachers and school staff, substance use prevention coalitions, and organizations providing all kinds of services in community – just to name a few. And 96% of training participants who responded to our surveys told us that our trainings were helpful and strengthened their skills! 


We also grew our amazing instructor team (shout out to Claire, Karina and Precious!) and added rockstars Jessica and Michele to facilitate our busy training calendar and the complex logistics involved. Brooke, Karen and I have been hustling too – planning for the future of Cypress, fundraising for what’s to come, and working on the Refugee Mental Health Initiative and SAMHSA’s Mental Health Awareness project. We had the privilege of presenting at the Mental Health First Aid National Instructor Summit. And for the second year in a row, Cypress Mental Health First Aid instructors were named the top instructors in the state of California by the National Council for Mental Wellbeing! Thank you, team; I am so proud to work alongside each of you.   


Leading with gratitude doesn’t mean that we only focus on the good stuff. I acknowledge that 2023 challenged us and our communities in many ways. But every single day, there has been something to celebrate. It has been a year of tremendous growth and accomplishment for Cypress. We are deeply grateful to Public Health Institute, our partners, and all of our training participants for your support this year. Working with you has been the best kind of learning experience for our team. And when we have hard days (because there are always hard days) we draw our inspiration from you.  


On behalf of the Cypress Resilience Project team – thank you for another wonderful year! 

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