Mental Health Champion Awards Nominations

Call for Nominations!

The Virginia Health Care Foundation (VHCF) announces a Call for Nominations for $25,000 in awards for five Mental Health Champions and the organizations they serve.

By all accounts, Virginia is in the midst of a mental health crisis. The overwhelming demand for behavioral health services far exceeds their availability. In response, many behavioral health (BH) professionals and others have valiantly stepped up to help.

VHCF’s Mental Health Champion Awards have been created to recognize individuals or teams who have gone above and beyond to improve the mental health of their patients/clients, organizations and/or communities. They may have expanded access to greatly needed behavioral health services; pioneered or expanded new ways of delivering therapies (e.g., telehealth, elevated integration of mental health services or a trauma-informed approach to care); increased availability of BH services to specific populations in particular distress; led resilience and wellness initiatives within their organizations to support staff mental health and prevent burnout; or engaged in other helpful or innovative approaches.

WHO can be nominated?

  • Licensed behavioral health professionals (g., Licensed Clinical Social Workers, Licensed Professional Counselors, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners)
  • Individuals with a degree with a BH health focus (g. Masters of Social Work or Counseling graduates, ­pre-licensees or students in training, Bachelors of Social Work graduates, school counselors)
  • Community health workers or other lay people working within an organization

WHAT is the amount of the Award?

  • Each award is $5,000. Half will be given to the nominating organization and half will go to the individual(s) selected.

WHEN/WHERE will this occur?

  • Nominations must be submitted via email to no later than February 23rd. Only ONE nomination per organization, please.
  • Winners will be selected by an independent panel of judges comprised of Virginia’s Secretary of Health and Human Resources, a representative of Virginia’s Medicaid Managed Care organizations, and VHCF Trustees/Advisors.
  • The Awards will be presented in person at a special Luncheon of Champions in Richmond this Spring.

HOW do you nominate an outstanding Mental Health Champion?

  • A nomination should answer all of the questions on the Mental Health Champion Nomination Form with a clear and compelling description of the nominee’s accomplishments, specific examples, and informative details.
  • Nominations may come from any of a variety of sources (g., colleague, supervisor, friend, community or organizational leader).
  • The nomination narrative should total no more than 400 words in Arial 12 pt. font, double-spaced.

Questions?  Please contact Andrea Lancaster, VHCF’s Chief Program and Impact Officer (  We look forward to receiving your nomination!

Last Updated on January 24, 2024