Wyoming County honors mental health ‘superheroes’ at annual breakfast | Lifestyles

What do superheroes and mental health community providers have in common?

Perseverance, resilience, strength, courage and caring, said officials at the Wyoming County Mental Health Department. These qualities were on display recently during the annual Mental Health Month Recognition Breakfast.

More than 75 people working in the mental health field gathered for the first time in two years at the event, organizers said in a news release. They celebrated their talents and refueled with food and wellness strategies.

Those receiving special recognition this year included:

n David Pfalzer from Spectrum Health and Human Services was honored as the Outstanding Community Provider.

Pfalzer is dedicated to providing quality psychiatric care to the rural community, officials said, and is consistently willing to take time and listen with compassion and understanding.

n Tricia Janes from Attica Central Schools was honored as the Outstanding Youth and Family Advocate. Janes was recognized for compassionate support of children and families, her resourcefulness, and her genuine and respectful attitude toward all she serves.

n Sabrina Pragle was acknowledged as an Outstanding Community Member, for her efforts to bust stigma surrounding mental illness and chemical dependence, and encouraging help-seeking behaviors. The award also recognized her positive example, which brings out the best in others.

n Joan Petzen, who recently retired from Cornell Cooperative Extension, was given the Lifetime Achievement Award for her dedication to our agricultural community, her efforts to learn about and promote mental wellness and asking for help, and fostering interdependence among community members.

n Peers Together of Wyoming County received the Outstanding Community Organization Award for creating a safe space for learning, socializing and understanding, practicing kindness and promoting wellness and recovery in our community.

“Our superheroes in Wyoming County are not recognizable by their capes, but by the kindheartedness with which they serve,” officials said. “The Wyoming County Mental Health Department is grateful to all who practice compassion and support the recovery process.” For more information on mental wellness, contact the Wyoming County Mental Health Department at (585) 786-8871.

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