Lighting the way for wellness
Education • Community • Action
Annual Report 2021
As a person living with mental health conditions, participating in the groups gives me a sense of community and something to look forward to. When I’m having a bad day, I know someone will be there to listen.
– Love B., support group attendee
A Word From Our CEO
Note from the Board Chair
Emerging from the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic, ongoing social upheaval, and a paradigm shift in how we talk about and address mental health, the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance lit the way for wellness for more people than ever before in 2021.
Through education, community, and action, DBSA moved the needle on mental health and empowered hundreds of thousands of people living with depression or bipolar disorder to forge a path to wellness.
In our annual report, you’ll find more information on mental health tools, such as the Wellness Wheel and Tracker, and how they helped thousands on their path to wellness. How our expanded and improved resources reached countless people in need of empowering support. And how our community coalesced around our shared mission of improving the lives of people experiencing mood disorders.
These triumphs can only happen when passionate mental health advocates come together and light the way for change.
We are deeply grateful to you, our supporters, and our community, as we go forward together in our relentless pursuit of mental health wellness for all.
Kent Dauten, 2022 Board Chair
In a year full of uncertainty, the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance doubled down on its mission to bring hope, help, education, and support to people living with depression or bipolar disorder. More than ever, people relied on DBSA to light the way to mental health wellness through education, community, and action.
For more than 35 years, the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance has been a trusted source for educational resources and tools to help people living with a mental health condition forge a path to wellness. Thanks to our supporters, more people were reached this year than ever before.
I’m Living Proof: A Letter to My Younger Self
7 podcasts 5,252 podcast listens
DBSA’s newest podcast launched in 2021. The series centers on the experiences of young adults who live with depression or bipolar to inspire hope, understanding, and empathy for those dealing with the challenges of a mood disorder.
The Wellness Toolbox
For those on the path to mental health wellness, DBSA’s Wellness Toolbox continues to be a foundational framework for assessing wellness and setting goals.
85% of survey participants said the Wellness Wheel instruction guide and tool helped them evaluate how well they are doing in specific areas of their life.
About 50% of survey participants discussed the Wellness Tracker with a clinician or mental health care provider.
85% of survey participants said the DBSA Wellness Tracker is helpful for their wellness.
Our community of people living with mental health conditions, their families, and mental health advocates are the heart of who we are and what we do. DBSA’s free peer support groups are available in-person and online to foster connections that lead to wellness.
Because of your support, people were helped with mental health support through:
111 local DBSA Chapters
400 online and in-person support groups
Over 20,300 people were helped with peer support through DBSA national online support groups in 2021, and in-person groups provided a supportive space for 300,000.
An average of 238 people a month attended the national online young adult support groups.
An average of 29 people a month attended the national online Veterans support group.
An average of 135 people a month attended the national online Black community support groups.
An average of 115 people a month attended the national online co-occurring usage disorder support groups.
In 2021, DBSA launched support groups for the Black community, designed to address the unique cultural needs of Black Americans.
Support groups like DBSA are the only place you can go to find people just like you. When you share, people understand exactly what you mean. The feedback is given in a helpful and non-demanding way. It also brings you out of the isolation of struggling with your illness alone.
– Yi Lin, support group attendee and facilitator
For me, the support groups are a place where we can let our hair down. We can talk about the things people say to us that make us feel bad. A lot of us have experienced the same types of discrimination and can say “Yeah, I’ve heard that, too. I understand.” ...We offer each other support because many of our families don’t understand the condition. With the support groups, it’s like we become a family to each other.
– Vanessa Harris, support group attendee
Around 400 monthly users
logged on to the Balanced Mind Parent Network’s new platform, designed to include more dynamic ways for parents and caregivers of a child living with a mood disorder to connect.
10 new members
joined the Young Adult Council, chartered to assist in expanding DBSA’s resources for young people. The council assisted in the creation of 11 new resources, including a guide on recognizing the signs of a mood disorder and grounding strategies.
Whether it’s bolstering the peer support specialist workforce, gathering supporters for an educational summit, or advancing policy, your support enabled DBSA to take action on the issues that matter to mental health advocates.
Peer Support Apprenticeship program takes off
Building on our legacy of enhancing peer support, DBSA launched the inaugural class of peer support specialist apprentices. As a result of DBSA’s training program, the four apprentices will be equipped with the skills necessary to achieve certification and gain employment as much-needed, highly valued peer support specialists.
Senior Strength program makes wellness a reality
I can attest that the Senior Strength Program has contributed to my wellbeing and recovery. During a time when my life was turned upside down and I was struggling physically and emotionally, I found that help came in the form of calls from Jennifer from the Senior Strength Program through Facey Medical. There was someone out there who checked in on me to see if I was alright. I looked forward to the calls and honest conversations with someone who could relate to my situation. This was a very important part of healing. The program is a vital and necessary part of moving forward. It benefited me tremendously in many ways.
– Senior Strength Program participant
Leadership Summit Most Successful To Date
The 2021 Leadership Summit featured keynote speaker and daytime television star Maurice Benard (“General Hospital”), who willingly shared about his life growing up with and managing a mood disorder.
400 registrants participated in 50 individual live and recorded sessions
designed to educate and empower those living with depression or bipolar disorder, their families, and friends.
Advocates mobilized to advance mental health policy goals
8 action alerts sent
17 letters of support
written for various mental health issues, such as funding for telehealth, mental health parity, and expanding peer support.
DBSA took a stand on police brutality against those experiencing mental health conditions and members of the Black community. Read the position statement here.
Statement of Activities
|Net Investment Income||$24,654||$156,906|
|Donated Goods and Other Services||$2,868||$36,112|
|Supporting Services Expenses|
|Management and General||$450,860||$464,584|
|Total Supporting Services||$787,532||$781,099|
|Change in Net Assets||$1,200,644||$562,419|
|Net Assets, Beginning of Year||$2,206,902||$3,407,546|
|Net Assets, End of Year||$3,407,546||$3,969,985|
Statement of Financial Position
|Cash and Cash Equivalents||$985,907||$1,099,437|
|Total Current Assets||$1,460,222||$1,854,195|
|Property and Equipment, Net||$46,679||$59,576|
Liabilities and Net Assets
|Accrued Payroll and Vacation||$72,749||$92,988|
|Total Net Assets||$3,407,546||$3,969,985|
|Total Liabilities and Net Assets||$3,603,106||$4,202,642|
My involvement with DBSA gave me back my sense of purpose and meaning. My experience as a peer facilitator has shown me that it is my willingness to be vulnerable and authentically share my story that allows me to be helpful to others.
– Rhonda Greder, support group facilitator
Meet Our Team
This work is only possible thanks to supporters like you. DBSA is deeply grateful for our community, staff, board of directors and donors who made our work possible in 2021 and beyond.
$100,000 or More
The Dauten Family Foundation
Jay Herman Fund
Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc.
$25,000 - $99,000
American Legion Child Welfare Foundation
Axsome Therapeutics, Inc.
Bryan and Iliana Cressey
Kent and Liz Dauten
Estate of Irving Greenberg
Compass Pathways Limited
Estate of Michael Herman
Intra-Cellular Therapies, Inc
Johnson & Johnson Community Impact
Lillian Goldman Charitable Trust
Network for Good
Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc.
Jim and Molly Perry
Rowe Family Foundation
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Timothy and Susanne Sullivan Family Foundation
Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America, Inc.
Telligen Community Initiative
The Allergan Foundation
United Behavioral Health
$10,000 - $24,999
Rebecca Weinstein Bacon and Wade Bacon
Benevity Community Impact Fund
Biotechnology Innovation Organization
Carole B. and Kenneth J. Boudreaux Foundation
Creating Healthier Communities (formerly Community Health Charities)
The George Link, Jr. Charitable Trust
Harman Family Foundation
Harri Hoffman Family Foundation
Henry Foundation, Inc.
MJ Leman and Carolyn Leman
The Marc Haas Foundation
Relmada Therapeutics, Inc.
Edward Swan and Mary Swan
Wintrust Financial Group
$5,000 - $9,999
Estate of Frances E. Allpass
Suzanne and James Bergoffen
John and Sharon Benson Family
Shaun and Selme Finnie
Bradley S. Hvolbeck
Mr. and Mrs. James A. McShane
Novus Medical Education
Christy B. Beckmann and Mr. Jim Vykopal
Mr. Darrel K. Wilcox
$2,500 - $4,999
Allergan, An AbbVie Company
John Budin, MD
David and Liz Chandler
Mark A. Frye, MD
House Of Cards
Eva Csordasne Kohegyi, MD
Jim and Jane Ann Lockwood
Ms. Susan Madian
Mr. Michael Pollock
John S. Tamerin, MD and Susan Penry-William
$1,500 - $2,499
Kimberly Allen and Susie Brodsky
Dr. and Mrs. Mark S. Bauer
Terrance and Georgia Blazevic
Bright Funds Foundation
Karen and Seth Hieken
Merry Beth, Michael, Matt and Sara, and Daniel Kowalczyk
Patient Access Network Foundation
John and Mary Quinn
Christopher and Lori Rothko
Sara Madeleine Saz
Shell Oil Company Foundation
Wilson Townsend II & Marlaina Townsend
$1,000 - $1,499
Krishna and Ja-Ling Agrawal
American Academy of Clinical Toxicology
Ms. Cynthia Ballard
Bengt and Marianne Bjernfalk
Lisa A. Blazar
Marcia and Robert Boehm
Ida and Steve Chan
Ms. Roberta Culbertson
Mary A. Fristad, MD and Joseph F. Fiala, MD
Hamilton and Traci Hill
Mr. Adam Hoeflich
Steven Hollon, MD
Edward and Mary Jinks
Judith R. Klein
Mr. Jordan Kurland
Pasquale Mascaro Jr.
Mr. and Mrs. Marc E. Mehl
David N. Osser, MD
Mr. and Mrs. Ricardo A. Pascoe
Roy Perlis, MD
Jacques and Beverly Perret
Marian Sassetti, MD
Jeffrey Scherrer PhD
Ms. Marylou Selo
Gregory Simon, MD
Altha Stewart, MD
Theodore and Joan Tanner
Ken and Pat Thompson
Cameron and Jane Thornton