Mental Health Association Receives SOPHi Award

Earlier this month the Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County (MHA) received a Spotlight on Population Health (SOPHi) Award. The MHA was among only seven organizations recognized by the Population Health Collaborative that works towards improving population health in Western New York by connecting diverse groups and aligning resources and expertise. Pictured are MHA Peer Specialist Sheridan Smith and Associate Director Steven Cobb (holding the award), who were in Buffalo to receive the award, and MHA Executive Director Kia Briggs.

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Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County

The Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County (MHA) is one of seven Western New York organizations to receive a 2018 SOPHi Award.

Spotlight on Population Health (SOPHi) awards focus on population health organizational achievements in the eight counties of WNY. They are presented by the Population Health Collaborative, an organization that works towards improving population health in WNY by connecting diverse groups and aligning resources and expertise.

MHA Associate Director Steven Cobb and Peer Specialist Sheridan Smith were at the fourth annual SOPHi Awards & Expo at Buffalo RiverWorks to receive the award. The other recipients were Buffalo Prenatal-Perinatal Network, Create a Healthier Niagara Falls Collaborative, Evergreen

Health, Greater Buffalo United Accountable Healthcare Network, Help Me Grow WNY, and Patient Voices Network.

The Mental Health Association also participated in the Expo at the October 5 event.

The MHA was nominated for this prestigious award by Lisa Schmidtfrerick-Miller, Healthy Communities Consultant for the Chautauqua County Department of Health and Human Services. In her nomination, Schmidtfrerick-Miller wrote, “From our point of view at the Health Department, the MHA meets a critical need and closes a gap in our community for ongoing support of those in recovery. MHA has been successful in advocating for individuals with mental illness and substance abuse disorder, and has helped our community to become more knowledgeable and accepting. MHA’s work improves the health and wellness of a population at risk, and their collaborative efforts help to strengthen our community.”

Population Health Collaborative’s website notes, “We know that sustainable change requires a multi-sector approach to community health, safety and wellness. Let’s bring together community leaders and local organizations to support all 1.5 million residents across the region to live well – by building better service delivery systems, supporting positive choices, pursuing policy and environmental change and improving their own behaviors.”

To learn more about the Population Health Collaborative, visit

The Mental Health Association is a peer recovery support center offering recovery coaching, peer support services, peer support groups, advocacy, veterans support, employment and job support, trainings, and family support. The MHA provides linkages to mental health and substance use treatment, primary care doctors, health and human services, and is available to assist adult individuals in identifying community resources for healthier living.

Anyone with questions or in need of services for themselves or a family member is welcome to call or stop in at Door 14 in the rear of the Gateway Center, 31 Water Street, Jamestown. Hours are Monday 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday and Wednesday 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursday 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.