Sunday, October 2, 2022
LA County Department of Mental Health Unveils a New Evidence-Based Strategy for Improving Mental Health in Urban Neighborhoods
By Sentinel News Service
Published September 7, 2018

Volunteers to transform blighted vacant lot into community garden; marks first
of planned series of LA County “greening” projects to improve mental health

WHAT: Volunteers and community leaders will gather to announce a new work in progress as they transform a blighted vacant lot into a vibrant community garden.  DMH initiated this pilot project in response to a new peer-reviewed study showing the mental health of residents in urban neighborhoods can be dramatically improved by simply cleaning up and “greening” blighted vacant lots.  DMH expects the new community garden in Watts to mark the first of a series of “greening” projects across LA County.

(Courtesy photo)

The Journal of the American Medical Association recently published a controlled randomized trial that documented a 41.5% decrease in feelings of depression and a staggering 62.8% drop in self-reported “poor mental health” – as compared to a control group of similar people and neighborhoods where blighted lots went untouched.

DMH is partnering with From Lot to Spot, a local non-profit dedicated to creating more green space in underserved communities. Project support comes from Mental Health Service Act (Prop. 63) funds earmarked for prevention and early intervention.


WHEN:                 Monday, September 10, 2018

  • 9:00 a.m. – Volunteers begin to build garden boxes, plant plants, paint murals
  • 10:00 a.m. – Volunteer welcome and program overview
    • Jonathan E. Sherin, D., Ph.D., Director LA County Dept. of Mental Health
    • Mimi Martinez McKay, Deputy Director, Strategic Communications, LA County Dept. of Mental Health
    • Viviana Franco, Founder & Executive Director, From Lot to Spot
  • 10:30 a.m. – 11: 45 a.m. – Volunteers continue to work on lot improvements


(Courtesy of From Lot to Spot)

WHERE:            9310 Wilmington Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90002


CONTACT:        Nerissa Silao, DDK Communications                          Nadia Gonzalez, Puente Strategies

[email protected], 310-874-9230          [email protected], 310-409-8931



Categories: Health
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