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Cardinal Dolan Doles Out Cheer for Children Struggling with Mental Disorders

Posted on May 9, 2018 by Alice Kenny  |  Share

Visits Astor Services for Children and Families

Doling out smiles and bear hugs, Cardinal Timothy Dolan made a special trek up to Rhinebeck, NY in Dutchess County today to cheer up children struggling with emotional and psychological problems and meet with staff at Astor Services for Children and Families, the Catholic Charities affiliated agency built there to help them.

As Catholic Charities Executive Director Msgr. Kevin Sullivan said, the Cardinal’s “timing is fortuitous, or better, graced.”

  • Between 13% and 20% of children in our country experience a debilitating mental disorder every year. 
  • Worse still, suicide is the third leading cause of death for youth ages 10 – 24. 
  • Children also struggle with substance abuse, risk-taking behaviors and the soul-crushing pressures of poverty and homelessness.

Fortunately, more than 10,000 children facing mental health issues receive help from Astor Services.  Thousands more receive help from Catholic Charities’ team of directly administered and affiliated agencies throughout the New York archdiocese.

Cardinal Dolan made his visit to bolster these children.  Equally important, he came to address the stigma around mental illness.  His aim was to reinforce not only this May, National Mental Health Awareness Month, but every day that mental illness is an illness, not a moral failing.    Moreover, it is treatable and help is available.

His Eminence also spoke today with state lawmakers and mental health professionals on the challenges of opioid addiction, bullying and teen suicide.  And he toured two Astor Services units that recently underwent a mini-renovation with the help of actors Hilarie Burton and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.

Do you know a child struggling with mental health issues?

Get free and low-cost mental health services for children at Astor Services for Children and Families

Find more free and low-cost mental health services for children and families provided by Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New York.

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Thursday, September 17 at 7:00 PM

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