Crisis lines will remain open, thanks to last-minute funding

Canvas Health has reached an agreed upon framework with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to continue answering calls from the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (NSPL).

For Minnesotans who are at risk of suicide and those who are struggling with mental health crises, this means that they can continue to call the NSPL at (800) 273-8255.

MDH committed $139,000 of previously awarded federal suicide prevention funds from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Additional dollars from other funders also have been secured that will sustain the Crisis Connection line, (612) 379-6363, through the spring of 2018.

“We are incredibly grateful to MDH and its leadership, as well as other funders, for recognizing the importance of this critical public service to the people of Minnesota,” said Matt Eastwood, Canvas Health CEO. “Because of their willingness to step forward to help keep these crisis lines open, lives will be saved.”

Both agencies will continue to work together with other state and federal agencies and private partners to create a long-term plan for an effective, user-friendly crisis line. These plans will likely include a 2018 request to the Minnesota legislature for a more permanent source of funding.

Through TXT4Life, Canvas Health also will continue responding to texts from those who reside in more than 50 Minnesota counties and all Tribal Nations in Minnesota.

The mission of Canvas Health is to bring hope, healing, and recovery to the lives of people we serve. Canvas Health provides services to people struggling with mental illness, substance use, crisis, unstable housing, and trauma. As a nonprofit community mental health agency, Canvas Health offers over 35 programs at seven metro clinics. The agency acts as a safety net provider, serving those with complex needs who may not otherwise be able to afford care. For more information, visit

Download Canvas Health information

Are you interested in learning more about Canvas Health or give information to people in your care? We are happy to send printed brochures directly to you or your place of business – just send an email request to You also can download a two-page printable brochure here. The downloadable brochure can be emailed or printed.

Register for the Stomp Out Suicide 5K

Registration for the Stomp Out Suicide 5K event opened on May 1, 2017. The Stomp Out Suicide 5K unites families for a day of fun and fitness with a serious purpose—linking people in crisis with help. In 2017, Canvas Health proudly became the host and benefiting charity of the event.

Register and learn how to form a team at

The Stomp Out Suicide 5K was created out of love and hope in memory of Alissa M. Haines of Wyoming, Minnesota. Alissa was lost to suicide on December 29th, 2011. Alissa suffered in silence. Our goal with the Stomp Out Suicide event is to reach others like Alissa, and to prevent this tragedy from happening again.

Proceeds of the event will support Canvas Health’s mental health, substance use, and crisis services, including Minnesota’s suicide prevention phone and text lines.

TXT4Life Statewide Conference to be held April 4-5

TXT4Life, a service of Canvas Health, will be hosting a Statewide Conference, April 4-5, 2017 at Grand Casino in Hickley, Minn.

The conference theme is Ensuring Safety, Creating Hope: An Action Response for Suicide Prevention.

Conference topics will include best practices that address the connection of suicide to unhealed historical and current trauma; chemical health issues, including opioid addiction; and Native approaches to crisis services. Participants also will have the opportunity to take part in evidence-based suicide prevention training (QPR Training).

TXT4Life Statewide Conference participants can earn up to 13.5 CEUs and fulfill requirements for licensure. Content includes chemical health, mental health, crisis intervention, and cultural inclusiveness. We have applied for CEUs from the following boards:

Minnesota Board of Social Work
Minnesota Board of Behavioral Health and Therapy
Minnesota Board of Marriage and Family Therapy
Minnesota Board of Psychology

Find out more and register here.

Canvas Health to Carry On Stomp Out Suicide’s Mission and 5K Event

Canvas Health recently entered into an agreement with Stomp Out Suicide, a local organization dedicated to preventing suicide and promoting mental health through public awareness, to carry on its incredible mission and 5K event.

Sean and Katie Haines created the Stomp Out Suicide event five years ago after their daughter, Alissa Marie Haines, died by suicide at the age of 15. Since its inception, the Stomp Out Suicide event has grown from a small community event to one that attracts over 1,500 people from all around the metro.

“We feel that Stomp Out Suicide’s mission of bringing both hope and awareness of mental illness and suicide prevention fits well with Canvas Health’s mission. We feel proud and honored that Sean and Katie have asked Canvas Health to carry the Stomp Out Suicide event into the future,” said Matt Eastwood, Canvas Health CEO.

This year’s Stomp Out Suicide 5K is scheduled for August 19 in Wyoming, MN! More details coming soon.

Canvas Health Selects New Doctoral Psychology Interns

Canvas Health offers students the opportunity to gain valuable on-the-job experience through its doctoral psychology internship program. Each year, the organization selects three interns from a pool of nationwide candidates.

Canvas Health is proud to announce its new doctoral psychology interns for the 2017-2018 academic year: Peter Lynn of the Clinical Science and Psychopathology program at the University of Minnesota, Stephanie McCarty of the University of St. Thomas, and Jessica Miller of the Minnesota School of Professional Psychology. Congratulations!


Familias Unidas Program offered for Spanish-speaking families

Spanish-speaking community members: Please join us at the Familias Unidas Program, beginning Tuesday, February 7 from 6-8 p.m. at Canvas Health’s Richfield location (1550 East 78th Street; Richfield, MN 55423). This is a 13-week program for families facilitated in Spanish by CLUES providers that provides education on chemical health and mental health topics to support families and reduce stigma. The sessions are free-of-charge and include a light dinner. Click on the links for more information: Familias Unidas Flyer and CLUES Brochure.

Canvas Health a partner in Make It OK in the Valley to shrink the stigma of mental illness

(story courtesy of the Lowdown – St. Croix Valley Area) – Communities in the St. Croix River Valley are starting a campaign—Make It OK in the Valley—to shrink the stigma of mental illness.

Leading the effort are HealthPartners hospitals and clinics in partnership with Washington County, St. Croix County, the Stillwater and White Bear Lake school districts, Andersen Corporation, Canvas Health, and Family Means and Youth Service Bureau. Radio, website, billboard and bus shelter ads will help to raise awareness of the campaign in the St. Croix Valley as well as in the Twin Cities and Goodhue County.

Marna Canterbury, director of community health for Lakeview Hospital, said, “This is a grassroots effort to start a conversation about mental illness and reduce the stigma. The goal of this campaign is to make it just as OK to talk about mental illness as we do about diabetes, heart disease and other physical illnesses.”

The Make It OK campaign is sponsored by HealthPartners, Regions Hospital Foundation, the Minnesota chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and Twin Cities Public Television (TPT). More than 30,000 people have visited The website features personal stories of people living with mental illness, tips on talking about mental illnesses and more. Five Make It OK documentaries on TPT won a Board of Governors Emmy Award in 2014.

In addition to the Make It OK campaign, HealthPartners hospitals and clinics have made a commitment to two other projects to improve care for patients with mental illness, including adding mental health services at Stillwater Medical Group’s primary care clinic and improving care for mental illness in emergency rooms at all HealthPartners hospitals in the St. Croix Valley (Amery, Hudson, Lakeview and Westfields hospitals).

“We support mental health in multiple ways and want to support our patients in getting the care that they need to treat mental illness,” said Ted Wegleitner, CEO of Lakeview Health and president of Lakeview. “If we can make it OK to talk about mental illness, more people will hopefully feel at ease when asking for help.”

Goodhue and Dakota counties also have Make It OK campaigns. The Goodhue program is supported by Red Wing Shoe Company, the YMCA, Mayo Clinic Health System, United Way, churches and schools. In Dakota County, more than 35 presentations have been delivered to schools, churches and community events.

Canvas Health’s ECBA Program honored with Stillwater Area Foundation Grant

The Stillwater Area Foundation presented Canvas Health with a $4,000 grant this week to help children (ages 0-5) in our Early Childhood Behavior Assistance Program. We are incredibly grateful for their support! Learn more about ECBA’s Early Childhood Clinical Services and Early Childhood Consultation.

TXT4Life program increases efforts, outreach, and expands across the state

TXT4Life, a suicide prevention resource for residents in Minnesota funded by the Minnesota Department of Human Services, and serviced by Canvas Heath, has significantly expanded and increased its ability to respond to the needs of both the communities and individuals it serves during 2016. The program has both expanded its’ service areas and has implemented several new initiatives.

TXT4Life continues to distinguish itself from other text-based suicide prevention programs by employing Tribal Liaisons and other Regional Coordinators who present information at schools, community organizations, and other public forums to build program awareness and to give people opportunities for asking questions and request help. The program also has expanded its database of community-specific mental health and mobile crisis services, and other resources that can offer texters longer-term help after text conversations are completed. Providing free suicide intervention and prevention trainings to communities and collaborating with mobile mental health crisis teams and other providers, are other key features of TXT4Life.

Throughout 2016, TXT4Life has collaborated with agency and community partners and all Tribal Nations to align program actions with the goals and objectives of the DHS Contract.  As a part of these collaborations, TXT4Life Regional Coordinators have used research and evidence-based best practices, including culturally responsive and inclusive approaches to reach out to populations identified as “high risk” for suicide throughout the state, including members of Tribal Nations; adult, white older males; and students in grades 7-12. A substantial increase of text conversations from these populations is evident since the implementation of the new initiatives, and continues to grow.

Serving all the Tribal Nations in Minnesota in effective and culturally meaningful ways, TXT4Life is devoted to help end suicide among the population with the highest need in Minnesota-Native youth.  “Being invited into the Tribal communities is an honor. The Tribal Nations have shared a sincere commitment to making the TXT4Life program a central part of their suicide prevention efforts,” said Dr. Rosemary White Shield, TXT4Life Regional Supervisor.

TXT4Life also has a strong presence with students across 54 counties in the state. During a recent school presentation by a TXT4Life Regional Coordinator, a young boy connected deeply with the presentation. When counselors at the school talked with him, they discovered that he had been having suicidal thoughts, and the TXT4Life presentation had encouraged him to reach out for help.

“You saved a young boy’s life today,” the school counselor later told the Regional Coordinator. “What you do matters.”

To use the TXT4Life program, a texter sends the word LIFE to 61222 to be connected to a trained counselor. Counselors respond to texts 24 hours a day, seven days a week, ensuring safety, confidentiality, and helping to create hope for all who turn to them.

The TXT4Life program partners with Tribal Nations directly, as well as several agencies across the state to serve funded counties. Though the program is not funded to respond to texts in the Twin Cities metro at this time, funding efforts will continue in the next legislative session. For more information, visit