The meaning of Advancement at the National Mental Health Innovation Center

It is no secret that there are a lot of charities a donor can contribute to.  According to the National Center for Charitable Statistics (NCCS), over 1.5M nonprofit organizations are registered in the United States alone! Where does a donor begin when they want to make an impact and be philanthropic? 

I am fortunate to have the unique job to help those who are philanthropically inclined get connected to a cause that is truly making an impact in an area that is important to them.  Too often, I hear stories where someone donated to an organization and never heard anything in return.  That is one (of the very many!) reasons I love working at the National Mental Health Innovation Center.  The access to our team to see first-hand what is being done is uncommon.  Many times, a donor’s first point of entry to the Center is through a meeting with our Executive Director, Matt Vogl, and myself.  Matt has a way of connecting with each person walking through that door that is authentic and rare.  We share our story about why the National Mental Health Innovation Center (NMHIC) was created and what we’re doing to address mental health in this country, but oftentimes the magic in the meeting happens because of our guest.  When someone opens up about their own experience and thoughts about mental health – the collaborative conversation takes off.  Where else are you able to sit down with the Executive Director and brainstorm ways to truly change the way mental health is accessed?

Mental health is an area donors are interested in getting behind, but many times they are not sure how to really make the change on a bigger scale than their own community.  NMHIC isn’t graduating more mental health providers (which is important and very much needed); rather we are trying out innovative models to help prevent, treat and change mental health in this country.  Donors are able to get updates, see the work being done and interact with our team of professionals in ways other nonprofits aren’t able to offer.  If you’re curious about how to make a difference philanthropically, I encourage you to send me an email –  We’d love to have you to the Center and learn more about what ways you want to champion change in mental health.


Ashley Blubaugh is the Director of Development at NMHIC.

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