Monday, 21 September 2020



Statewide Groundhogs Meeting

Wednesday, December 20Groundhog Pic
The RLC's Springfield (Bowen) Center
235 Chestnut Street, Springfield @ 6pm
Please note the date has changed; instead of the 19th as previously stated, this group will now be meeting on the 20th.
Come have a voice in this statewide advocacy meeting facilitated by Oryx Cohen of the National Empowerment Center! Pizza and salad will be served. Call-in option available.
RSVPs helpful but not required! If possible, please let us know you're coming by e-mailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Who are the Groundhogs?
The Groundhogs are a statewide advocacy group organized by the National Empowerment Center. The group is made up of people who identify as having psychiatric histories. (A local chapter of the Groundhogs met for about a year and was instrumental in advocating for the existence of Afiya peer respite.) The group has been meeting for several years and rotates the location of their meetings to different areas in the state to increase accessibility. They also operate an on-line listserv that you can join by e-mailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
From the Groundhogs: "Let us come together to build our community and to transform the clinical mental health system in Massachusetts (and the nation) into a system that honors our experiences and beliefs, and works with us instead of against us."

September Peer Networking Meeting

Peer Networking meetings are generally held the last Thursday of each month
at the RLC’s Holyoke Center, 187 High Street, suite 302 from 12:30 to 3:00pm.
The next meeting will be Thursday, September 28.

Local Summer Fireworks, 2017!

 Saturday, July 1st, 4pm -10:30 pm, Beacon Field.
Rain Date: Sunday, July 2nd.
Live music, food, and vendors, ending in a fireworks display over Poet's Seat Tower.
Friday, June 30, 6pm, 303 Homestead Avenue, Holyoke Community College.
Rain date: Saturday, July 1st.
Saturday, June 24th, Look Park, beginning at 5:00 p.m.
Rain date: Sunday, June 25th.
Carnival games and prizes, food for sale, and bands throughout the evening.
Bounce castle and slides, face painting, bean bag toss and more games. Fireworks start at dusk.
Tuesday, July 4, rain or shine. Parade at 10am, starting at the intersection of South and
East/West Housatonic Streets, and ending at Wahconah Park.
Fireworks start after the Pittsfield Suns game, usually between 9-10pm.
No rain date.
Tuesday, July 4th, Riverfront Park. Festivities start at 7pm (next to the Memorial Bridge).
Fireworks, live musical entertainment and food. More info: spiritofspringfield.org
West Springfield
Tuesday, July 4th, on the Town Common. Fireworks begin at 9:15pm.
Saturday, July 1, at South Middle School, 30 West Silver St .
Rain Date: July 2nd. Events begin at 6:30pm, fireworks start at dusk.

OurVoicesRaised.org Launched

OurVoicesRaised.org is a project supported by the Foundation for Excellence in Mental Healthcare’s Hearing Voices Research and Development Fund, partnered with voice hearers from the Western Mass RLC.

The fund has already sponsored the training of over 100 Hearing Voices group facilitators in 5 states across the nation. With 90 groups currently listing themselves on HearingVoicesUSA.org, the next phase of our project wants to answer the question “Why are Hearing Voices groups so useful for voice hearers?” That’s where the survey comes in.

OurVoicesRaised survey flyer

If you’re a voice hearer, have taken part in a Hearing Voices group and are 18 years or older, please consider sharing your knowledge and experience. To learn more about it, check us out at OurVoicesRaised.org. There, you’ll find the survey and a brand new community created to provide a space for groups to network and for all of us to share our stories!

Challenging Times

It is difficult to know what to say in this challenging time. Standing Rock, the election, and the fear, anger, upset, and sense of betrayal experienced by so many in our communities are very real.
It’s unclear what lies ahead as we enter what feels like a period of great unknown and potential threats for our black, brown, Muslim, queer, trans*, and female-identified fellow citizens. In the little that Trump has had to say about mental health, it also appears he leans in support of the Murphy Bill and other regressive legislation. We have a long road ahead of us.
We haven't gathered our thoughts enough to pull together a statement of our own, but we didn’t want to remain silent as if nothing were happening. While we hope that our spaces can offer people a place to find mutual support and connect without fear of hate speech, we also want to take this moment to raise up the words of others:
First, we want to share that Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey and others in her office have organized a new hotline to report any incidents of bias-related threats or hate crimes.
The number is 800.994.3228. Complaints can also be filed here:
Next, we want to share the following statement offered by Black Lives Matters last week. We have no claim to their words, but feel that those words are nonetheless powerful and important to share. Please select "Read more" below.

Read more: Challenging Times



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