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All Families, All Faiths

Faith and community organizations play an essential role in strengthening Montana’s children and families, while also empowering communities to be good stewards of their health and wellness.

The Office of Faith and Community Based Services is a conduit between the Department of Public Health and Human Services and faith and community organizations across Montana creating a two-way flow of information, resources and programs to serve the identified health and wellness needs in each community most effectively.

Through effective collaborations, the Office of Faith and Community Based Services can expand resources and strategies for effective prevention and intervention to improve health outcomes for all Montanans.

A group of volunteers picking up trash, with a text overlay that says "Faith and Community in Action!"

LifeHouse Adopt-a-Room 

You could be a part of opening the door to Hope, Freedom and a Future for a woman that you may never meet. According to the U.S. Department of State, every 30 seconds another individual becomes a victim of human trafficking. Hundreds of thousands of victims live within our borders and are searching for this Hope. 80% of victims that are rescued end up back in their traffickers hands because there are no available resources.  

This door opens to the possibility of a future for a life without fear, free from exploitation. Victims that come out of “the life” of trafficking are frequently subjected to the back alleys and dark streets of the world. Being beside a river or surrounded by the forest gives them a sense of serenity that they have never experienced and helps remove the triggers and cues that have surrounded them for so long.  

LifeHouse will be a place for women to focus on recovery and building the new life that lies ahead. Adopting a Room at The LifeHouse will not only allow you to give, but to DO. Each room will be completely remodeled into a beautiful suite in which each woman will call her own during her stay at The LifeHouse. The group that “adopts” the room will fund, design, and construct and furnish it right down to the towels, and bed linens. When the survivor leaves The LifeHouse they will take with them the bed linens, the towels and the comforter to the place that she will call home as she continues on her new journey. It will be up to each group if they would like to re-supply that room with new linens, towels and comforter each time (the average stay will be 8 months).

For more information, reach out to The LifeGuard Group at info@thelifeguardgroup.org or call 406-396-5053.  


Nominations requested for four Elder Justice Councils

The Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS), Montana Department of Justice and the Commissioner of Securities and Insurance are seeking individuals to serve on one of four regional Elder Justice Councils that were created by Governor Greg Gianforte in response to increased reports of abuse, neglect, and exploitation of senior citizens and adults with disabilities.

DPHHS reports that in 2020, a record number 4,500 Montanans were the victim of elder abuse, an increase of nearly 30% since 2018. In 2021, the numbers increased again when a total of 4,906 Montanans were reported to be the victim of elder abuse.

It is preferred that applicants have current or prior experience in the fields of criminal and civil law, investigation and enforcement, banking, accounting, investments, fiduciary services, health care, insurance, financial planning, senior and disability adult services, and senior advocacy. Members receive a daily stipend and travel expenses.

Montanans who are interested in participating in the important work of the Elder Justice Councils are encouraged to submit an application at https://svc.mt.gov/gov/boards/docs/Application-for-Appointment.pdf.

For additional information or questions, contact the Senior and Long Term Care Division at 406-444-4077 or Hannah Slusser, Governor Gianforte’s Boards and Appointments Advisor, at 406-444-3111.


Submit your stories and photos

Send us info about the work that's happening in your community - we want to share stories from across Montana! Stories may be shared on the DPHHS website, FCBS newsletter, social media, or other outlets as appropriate. Submit photos and a brief summary of the event or activity to Tracy Moseman (tracy.moseman@mt.gov). 

Submission guidelines:
  • At least one high-quality photo (find smartphone camera tips here)
  • Get permission from any people in the photo before submitting (we have a release if you need one)
  • Provide details about the event/activity - who, what, when, where, why and how
  • If possible, provide a quote from a participant or organizer
  • Share tips or lessons learned for others who may want to do something similar
  • Contact information (name, phone number, email, role)
  • Website and social media handles, if available
Creating a Healthier Life: a Holistic Approach

A series of eight overlapping circles depicts SAMHSA's Eight Dimensions of Wellness, with text that reads: emotional, environmental, financial, social, spiritual, occupational, physical, intellectual, and environmental.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Wellness Initiative envisions a future in which people with mental or substance use problems pursue health, happiness, recovery, and a full and satisfying life in the community.

Each individual’s path will be a bit different. Every aspect of wellness can affect a person’s life.

Working toward all of them in one way or another is a great goal, because wellness relates directly to the quality of a person’s life.

This guide offers a broad approach for things we can do—at our own pace, in our own time, and within our own abilities—that can help us feel better and live longer.

Download SAMHSA's Eight Dimensions of Wellness.


The Role of Faith Communities in Holistic Health
  1. Emotional: Being able to identify your emotions, and healthy ways to express and manage feelings is critical to the health and wellness of relationships with others.  Learning to deal with stress, disappointment, anger and frustration in healthy ways are critical to emotional health. Many faith and community organizations provide or host support groups such as grief and loss or Alcoholics Anonymous, training to understand childhood trauma, and individual support to those who reach out for help.

  2. Financial: For many, it is challenging to think about retirement planning and savings when they are living paycheck to paycheck. Many faith organizations support programs such as financial planning, teaching children about tithing and giving to others, and help those in their communities who are under financial stressors who need supports such as rental assistance, food, gas for their car, or other basic needs.

  3. Social: While some people are more introverted than others, everyone needs meaningful relationships with family, friends and their community. Parenting classes, support groups, couples counseling, service to the elderly who may be isolated, and youth groups all provide safe and social environments to nurture relationships.

  4. Spiritual: Humans need a set of values and beliefs in which to frame their life.  Spiritual wellness involves developing an understanding of one’s beliefs and values and how those impact how they view their place in this world.  Spiritual wellness can be nurtured and shaped through affiliation with a formal religion.

  5. Occupational: Many Americans wrestle with the balance of work and home life. And when this is out of balance, there are ripple effects across other areas of health. Faith communities teach the importance of finding time to focus on the other aspects of health including rest and spirituality, helping keep this important balance.

  6. Physical: There are many components to physical health including diet and exercise. Faith and community organizations across Montana do a lot to promote the physical health of their communities including hosting support groups for people in recovery, providing immunization clinics in their facilities, providing food to those in need, and acknowledging days of action such as heart health month and diabetes prevention.

  7. Intellectual: Humans need to feel mentally challenged and be given opportunities to expand their skills. Faith and community organizations often provide these opportunities in the form of quilting groups, cooking classes, retreats or camps with youth where new skills are taught. Providing opportunities for multi-generations to come together and teach one another skills such as making art or food can be a wonderful opportunity.

  8. Environmental: Where people live, both their community and the physical structure, impact one’s health.  Homelessness, clean water, and access to childcare can all impact a person’s health. Many faith and community organizations lead efforts to provide shelter and housing for the homeless, while other faith communities have opened their doors to provide safe childcare options for the community. Many faith communities prioritize activities such as recycling and awareness activities to highlight the importance of humans living on a healthy Earth.


Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships (Partnership Center)
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The Partnership Center leads the Department's efforts to build and support partnerships with faith-based and community organizations in order to better serve individuals, families and communities in need. 


Faith-Based and Community Initiatives (FBCI)
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Faith-based and community initiatives (FBCI) is a model for how effective partnerships can be created between federal programs and faith-based and community organizations. FBCI supports several programs in mental health services, substance abuse prevention, and addiction treatment at the national, state, and local levels.

  • Faith-based grant programs and initiatives
  • The role of SAMHSA
  • Funding opportunities
  • Resources

Visit the pages below for Montana resources and ways you and your community can take action. 

Building Healthy Families

Building healthy families is pivotal to thriving communities, and faith and community organizations play a key role.

  Mental Health
and Suicide Prevention

One in four individuals who seek help for mental health turn to faith leaders BEFORE they seek help from a clinical professional. 

People with Disabilities

People with disabilities deserve support to live in the community they choose while leading a productive, healthy and fulfilled life. Search here to find services near your community. 

 

COVID-19 Resources

Faith and community leaders are a valuable source of information and support for their members during stressful times, including the COVID-19 pandemic.

Foster and
Adoptive Family Supports

Children have the right to grow and develop in safe and permanent family environments. When families and communities collaborate, the possibility for success is increased. The safety of children in our communities is dependent upon multi-level stewardship of human and financial resources.

Substance Abuse
Prevention and Treatment

Substance use negatively impacts families and communities. Faith and community organizations play a critical role in preventing substance use in youth and connecting people to treatment.

 

Human Trafficking
in Montana

Human trafficking is the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act. Montana is not immune, and in 2021 the Montana Department of Justice reported 68 cases.

Housing, Energy,
and Food Assistance

Faith and community organizations are called into service to provide basic needs including shelter and food for their neighbors. Learn about programs and services to help families and individuals meet basic needs in your community.

Older Montanans

Together faith and community organizations can support older adults and help them stay healthy and connected to their communities while living independently.