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Far too often, mental illnesses and addictions make the headlines only in the wake of tragedies, while stories of hope and courage get little attention.  The National Council for Behavioral Health is proud to bring you 50 stories of recovery in a special issue of National Council Magazine to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Community Mental Health Act.

On October 31, 1963 President John F. Kennedy signed into law legislation that would transform the lives of people with mental illnesses.  Since that historic day, we’ve learned that people with mental illnesses and people with addictions can recover and live and work and love as we do in our communities.  We’ve seen what hope and care can accomplish. We’ve seen it in the lives of thousands like the 50 individuals who chose to share their stories in this special issue of National Council Magazine.

We applaud and appreciate these 50 individuals — for sharing their struggles, their dreams and their accomplishments, and for reminding us that people don’t recover in isolation, they recover in community.

We share with Oprah Winfrey the understanding that, “Every one of us gets through the tough times because somebody is there, standing in the gap to close it for us.” We thank all those who stand in the gap — policymakers, researchers, organizational leaders, staff, and a peer community that has brought new energy and a fierce determination to the ongoing fight for equal rights and full social inclusion. The dedication of all these groups is evidenced in the stories spanning the pages of the magazine.

We invite you to read these 50 stories — download a PDF of National Council Magazine at

Please feel free to feature this entire issue or selected stories on your website and social media channels and to share with your local media, funders, policymakers, community partners, and stakeholders.

If you need help with your outreach efforts, contact Meena Dayak, editor-in-chief of National Council Magazine at And as always, we welcome your feedback and questions, email me at And please share comments on my blog,

Best Regards,

Linda Rosenberg, MSW
President & CEO
National Council for Behavioral Health