Mental Health Minute

April 3, 2020

Mental Health Minute Now Weekly!

During this time, balancing being in the present and planning for the future can be challenging. How do we support ourselves and the needs of our children, loved ones, and community?

To help with that, Mental Health Minute will now come out each Friday instead of monthly. We want to share increased mental health resources at this time. Each Mental Health Minute will provide resources, tips & tricks, and new ideas to use over the weekend and to start each week strong.

I have attached a document from Mental Health Colorado, in English and Spanish, with points for talking to children and adolescents about COVID-19 and tips for caregivers to care for and protect their own and their family’s mental health.

Please share and let me know if you have any questions. I will continue to share resources that may be helpful to our students, our community and educators.

Help is A Phone Call Away

Questions about COVID-19?

Information center for questions about COVID-19 for Larimer County residents. Here are the best ways to reach us:
Call the Joint Information Center : 970-498-5500
Open Monday - Friday, 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
Text us questions: 970-999-1770
We will do our best to respond within 4 hours during the day

Disaster Distress Hotline – 1-800-985-5990

National Suicide Prevention Hotline – 1-800-273-8255

Colorado Crisis Services – 844-493-TALK (8255) or text “TALK” to 38255

Estes Valley Crisis Advocates - 970-577-9781

Veterans Crisis Line – 1-800-273-8255 or text 838255

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Estes Valley Resources

Updates from the Town of Estes Park: The Town of Estes Park is committed to following the guidelines of public health agencies to help control the COVID-19 pandemic. Operational updates, messages from officials, and resources are included below.

Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center: EPNRC has a great listing of COVID-19 Nonprofit News & Updates to stay current with who is offering what during the pandemic. Also check out is an existing platform for this community that allows nonprofits and organizations to post their needs. It allows volunteers to go in and respond to needs.

Active Coping Calendar

The world is in crisis. Keep Calm, Stay Wise & Be Kind. This Active Coping Calendar has daily actions for April 2020 to help us look after ourselves and each other as we face this global crisis together.

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Self-Care in the Time of Corona Virus for Parents

by Rae Jacobson on

When you’re a parent, self-care often slips to the bottom of the list. But taking care of yourself isn’t a luxury. It’s essential. And during this difficult time, when children are home and stress is running high, it’s more important than ever. Here are five tips from our clinicians that can help.

Make time for yourself

Right now, much of the personal time that was part of daily routines — commutes, time alone at home or at the store, social time with friends — is not available for folks with kids at home. Without it, we have to be intentional about creating space to recharge and decompress. This could look like taking a shower or bath, walking around the block alone (or with your dog), or designating time to read or simply zone out after the kids have gone to bed.

Prioritize healthy choices

The added stress and lack of structure we’re all experiencing right now can make it easy to slip into habits that feel good in the moment but can be detrimental in the long term. “Make sure you’re eating properly, try to get enough sleep (but not too much!), and create a routine that includes physical activity,” recommends Jill Emanuele, PhD, a clinical psychologist at the Child Mind Institute. This doesn’t mean pressuring yourself to get into tip-top shape, or not eating ice cream or binging your favorite shows. It does mean being thoughtful and intentional about how you’re treating yourself and your body.

Be realistic

“Perfectionism and the coronavirus don’t mix,” says David Anderson, PhD, a clinical psychologist at the Child Mind Institute. “It’s time to be exceedingly realistic, both at work and as a parent.” Avoid burnout by setting realistic expectations and giving yourself grace if you can’t meet them. “Practice forgiveness and self-compassion,” says Dr. Anderson. Parents should remind themselves that these are unprecedented times. “There’s no playbook for this. Remember you’re doing your best during a very difficult time. Cut yourself some slack.”

Set boundaries

Anxiety is rampant right now. With so much worry and uncertainty floating around it can be easy to absorb other people’s fears and concerns without even realizing it. If you have a friend or family member who’s in the habit of sending worst-case-scenario news or is prone to sending anxiety-provoking text messages, practice a little emotional distancing. Let them know you sympathize but that you’re taking a break from worrying news, or simply hit the Do Not Disturb button. You can always reconnect when things are calmer.

Reconnect with things you enjoy

Think proactively of things you can do with this enforced time at home. Get back in touch with hobbies or activities you enjoy but rarely have time for, or make the choice to learn a new skill. Maybe there’s a knitting project you’ve always wanted to try, but you’ve been too busy. Or you’ve been meaning to learn how to needlepoint. Maybe you love jigsaw puzzles but with rushing between work and home and caring for kids, it’s been years since you had the time to do one. If young children make solo activities unrealistic, seek out activities you can enjoy together, like baking bread, or making art.

Finally, remember, being kind to yourself will not only help you stay calm during this difficult time, it will help ensure that you have the bandwidth you need to take good care of your family. When you’re running on fumes, caring for others can tax your already depleted resources to breaking point. But when you prioritize your needs, you’re filling the tank, emotionally and physically, and that means you’ll be in a position to offer comfort and care to others when they need it most.

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Uninsured or Soon to Be Due to COVID-19?

Every day seems to bring additional news about COVID-19, we are in uncharted territory. At

Connect for Health Colorado, we are working to help protect the health and well-being of as

many Coloradans as possible and help further our mission of providing access to health

coverage. COVID-19 – with all its uncertainty – has come with its own challenges, so it is

important to us to provide up-to-date information on the impacts to the work you do.

Access to Care- Coverage


Colorado Connect for Health, has opened a special enrollment period for Coloradans who are

currently uninsured or about to lose coverage due to COVID-19. That coverage would start

May 1, 2020. Coloradans must enroll by April 30th to receive coverage under this

COVID-19 rule.

To Schedule a virtual appointment with one of our Health Coverage Guides Call Today.

Lisa: (970) 590-2784 or

Lydia: (970) 301-7649 or

While we are closed to the public, The North Colorado Health Alliance remains open and

available for members and partners during this time of uncertainty.

Hannah Knox, M.Ed., LPC, NCC

I am a professional that believes in the empowerment of youth to create meaningful change in this world. The majority of my time is serving Estes students (and families) through direct service, case collaboration, and case management. I support staff through education, consultation, and resource referrals. I also work with community providers for wrap-around support for individual cases, community events, group offerings, and mental health crisis preparation.