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Mental Health Initiative

(En Español)

The Mental Health Initiative is an education and grant initiative designed to assist Indiana congregations in addressing mental health and wellness among their members. This opportunity includes educational sessions and a grant of up to $40,000 to fund expenses and activities that support mental health programming in congregations.

The Center for Congregations is committed to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and therefore encourages congregations of color and rural congregations to apply.


As a result of participating in this Mental Health Initiative, your congregation will:

  • Understanding ways that their congregation can benefit from the intersection of mental and spiritual wellness.
  • Harnessing their congregation’s spiritual practices and faith claims to promote healing and mental well-being.
  • Understanding cultural dynamics that can limit the discussion of mental health in congregations.
  • Equipping themselves to identify and offer mental health resources to support their faith community.
  • Finding rejuvenation and healing while learning how to offer it to their own congregation.
  • Learning ways to support clergy people and their spiritual and mental wellness.


This grant awards 90% funding up to $40,000 and will require a 10% commitment from each participating congregation. More information is below in Details for Selected Congregations section.

Continue scrolling for more information.


Congregations from the counties listed below are invited to submit an interest form in 2023. This initiative will be opened to northern and southern Indiana counties in 2024.

Boone, Clay, Clinton, Delaware, Fayette, Fountain, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Henry, Howard, Johnson, Madison, Marion, Montgomery, Morgan, Owen, Parke, Putnam, Randolph, Rush, Shelby, Tippecanoe, Tipton, Union, Vermillion, Vigo, Warren, and Wayne.


This is a competitive process and a cohort of 30 congregations will be selected in 2023. Congregations who submit an application will be notified by mid-February 2023.

Applications are due January 27, 2023 by email


Selection Process
  • Submit an application by Friday, January 27, 2023, to be considered for the cohort.
  • Congregations who apply will be notified by mid-February 2023.
  • This is a competitive initiative. Not all congregations who apply will be selected.
  • If your county is not listed above, you will be eligible to apply for the 2024 cohort.
Details for Selected Congregations


  • March – August 2023: Educational component of the cohort
  • October 2023: Submit project description
  • November – December 2023: Award checks mailed
  • January – December 2024: Implementation and reporting of mental health project


Team Member Requirements 

  • Select two to four people from your congregation to be your Mental Health Initiative team.
  • Designate one person as the project director who is expected to attend all sessions.
  • Include a pastor or clergy person on your team.


Educational Session Requirements

  • Cohort participants will attend up to five educational sessions in 2023.
  • Educational sessions are comprised of in-person and online gatherings.
    • In-person sessions will range from a half to a full day.
    • Online sessions will range from 30-60 minutes.
    • Stable internet or cellular connection is expected and Zoom access is required.
    • One to four team members may attend each educational session. 
  • 2023 sessions are tentatively scheduled for:
    • Late April
    • Mid June
    • Late August
    • Zoom gatherings may be scheduled as needed


Project Description and Funding 

  • Cohort participants will submit a project description in October 2023.
  • The maximum grant dollar amount awarded is $40,000, or 90% of the total cost of grant activities, for each project. Therefore each congregation’s financial responsibility is 10% of the grant eligible expenses and must be in the form of dollars and cannot include in-kind donations.
  • Congregations may apply for and receive less than $40,000.


Grant Eligible Activities may include, but are not limited to, a combination of the following (all activities must be related to mental health): 

  • Guest speakers (food and/or travel costs)
  • Retreats (food/travel costs/supplies/faciltiy rental)
  • Licensed counselor for family, group, or individual sessions where insurance is not available (not applicable for salary of licensed counselors already on staff at a participating congregations)
  • Conference attendance (registration, travel and lodging expenses)
  • Online courses related to mental health
  • Books
  • Curriculum
  • Training (i.e. Mental Health First Aid, Celebrate Recovery)
  • Coursework in pursuit of a degree or professional certification is not grant eligible
  • Technology or building improvements/fixed assets that support mental health activities