Department of Health and Human Services

Prevention & Awareness

Recovery | Suicide Prevention | | Alcohol Awareness | Mental Health

Man doing yoga

Get help with COVID-19: Apply for rent or mortgage assistance and learn more about Milwaukee County’s ongoing response.

Milwaukee County Department of Health and Human Services Update in Response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Milwaukee County Department of Health and Human Services is committed to the safety and needs of the individuals that we serve. We are taking the current situation with the Coronavirus very seriously and working closely with public officials and community partners to ensure access to services. Look for any changes and updates to services on the divisions' landing pages. You can also call 2-1-1 for information. IMPACT 2-1-1 provides a coordinated point for those in need.

View a Complete List of Milwaukee County and Community Partner Resources

Light & Unite Red

Fall 2020 Virtual Takeover 

Don’t be in the dark this fall, turn the light on addiction.

Milwaukee County is raising awareness this fall about the dangers of substance use. In 2020, the Light & Unite Red campaign is critically important. Substance use has seen a dramatic increase during the pandemic, making it more important than ever to raise awareness through Light & Unite Red.

Everyone is encouraged to participate in this fall’s Light & Unite Red Virtual Takeover!

Join the movement to raise awareness about the dangers of substance use and ways to be well.

Prevention & Awareness Events 

Previously recorded: Mental Health Virtual Fair - Aug. 12, 2020

Previously recorded: Mental Health and Wellness Virtual Fair: Parents and Youth Workers - Aug. 26, 2020

Previously recorded: MCSAP Resource Fair-Suicide and Substance Misuse - Sept. 9, 2020

12th Annual Milwaukee Walk for Recovery (Virtual) - Sept. 18 - 20, 2020

Virtual Celebration of Recovery - Sept. 19, 2020 10 a.m. 

Town Hall: Mental Health & Suicide Awareness - Sept. 14, 2020, 6 p.m. 

A Proven Lifeline: Keeping Hope in Mind While Addressing the Complexities of Mental Illness (Webinar) - Sept. 15, 2020, 12 p.m. 

Grab & Go Back-to-School Event, Owen's Place - Sept. 16, 2020

Finding Your Fairytale, Sept. 16, 2020, 7 - 8:30 p.m. 

SAMHSA's 2020 National Recovery Month Webinar: Communities Supporting Recovery - Sept. 17, 2020, 1:30 p.m. 

Virtual Recovery Month Luncheon - Sept. 29, 2020, 2:30 p.m. 

October is National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month: Participate in a dose of prevention challenge 

The week of October 4-10 is Mental Illness Awareness Week 

Light & Unite Red Virtual Naloxone Training - Oct. 6, 2020, 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.

Light & Unite Red Virtual Naloxone Training - Oct. 8, 2020, 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.  

Owen's Place Grab & Go Event - Oct. 7, 2020, 4 - 6 p.m. 

Mental Health Doesn't Have to be Scary! - Oct. 8, 2020, 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Mental Health Doesn't Have to be Scary! - Oct. 9, 2020, 4:30-6:30 p.m. 

LGBTQ+ Youth Substance Use Prevention Summit - Oct. 10, 2020, 6-9 p.m. 

The Summit Real Talk - Oct. 10, 2020, 1-4 p.m. 

Milwaukee County Substance Abuse and Prevention Wellness Fair (Virtual) - Sept. 9, 2020, noon

Milwaukee County Substance Abuse and Prevention Coalition Meeting - Sept. 17, 2020, 12:00 noon - 1:30 p.m. 

Milwaukee County Substance Abuse and Prevention Wellness Fair (Virtual) - Sept. 23, 2020, 4:30 p.m.

Milwaukee County Substance Abuse and Prevention Wellness Fair (Virtual) - Oct. 14, 2020, 2 p.m.

Milwaukee County Substance Abuse and Prevention Wellness Fair (Virtual) - Oct. 28, 2020, 5 p.m.

SAMHSA'S The Importance of Integrating Recovery Support Services: The Certified Behavorial Health Clinic Model - Sept. 24, 2020, 1:30 p.m.

Milwaukee Got Talent - Sept. 26, 2020, 5-7 p.m. 

Substance Abuse and the Faith Community Workshop - Sept. 26, 2020, 9-11 a.m. 

Substance Abuse and the Faith Community Workshop - Sept. 28, 2020, 6-8 p.m. 

Event: Rise Above The Influence - Sept. 29, 2020, 2-4 p.m. 

Event: Rise Above The Influence - Sept. 30, 2020, 2-4 p.m. 

Annual Youth Summit: Real Talk - Oct. 10, 2020, 1 p.m. 

Preventing Trauma and Youth Suicide During COVID-19 and Beyond - Oct. 14, 2020, 11:30 a.m. 

Affected by addiction? Attend Nar-Anon Family Groups, meeting times vary 

Adult Mental Health First Aid - Oct. 21, 2020, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Find out more about "Red Ribbon Week" - Oct. 23 - 31, 2020

Prescription Drug Take Back Day - Oct. 24, 2020

Dose of Reality, Find a Prescription Take Back Location - Oct. 24, 2020

Wounded Wings Light & Unite Red Drive-Through Resource Fair - Oct. 24, 2020, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

True Skool Virtual Experience - Oct. 26, 2020, 4:45 p.m. 

The Impact of Substance Use on the Developing Adolescent Brain - Oct. 27, 2020, 2 p.m. 

MCSAP Healthy Families Virtual Resource Fair - Oct. 28, 2020, 5 - 6 p.m. 

Owen's Place Grab & Go Event - Nov. 4, 2020, 4-6 p.m. 

Treating Tobacco Dependence in Youth and Adolescents - Nov. 5, Noon to 1 p.m. 

Hidden in Plain Site Parent Test, Video 

Who's Doing What? The Epidemiolgy of Adolescence Substance Use - Nov. 17, 2020, 2 p.m. 

Milwaukee's Got Talent-3rd Annual Showcase, Event Video 

Thank You to Our Light & Unite Red Partners

27th Street Drug Free Coalition     Addiction Policy Forum     Beyond Addiction     Behavioral Health Division     Children's Community Health     COA      Drug Free 53206     Greendale     

Milwaukee Bucks      MCSAP      Milwaukee Fire      Mind Body Soul Dancers      Neu Media      Neu Life      Public Policy Institute

Safe and Sound      SDC     Vivent       VOL     Wraparound      Wounded Wings      

Recovery Month/Suicide Prevention Week

Recovery Month: Sept.1-30, 2020 | Suicide Prevention Week: Sept. 6-12, 2020

31st Annual National Recovery Month, September 2020

Every September, SAMHSA sponsors Recovery Month to increase awareness and understanding of mental and substance use disorders and celebrate the people who recover. The annual campaign is Join the Voices for Recovery: Celebrating Connections.

Suicide Prevention Week

Although there is no single cause of suicide, one of the risks for suicide is social isolation, and there’s scientific evidence for reducing suicide risk by making sure we connect with one another. We can all play a role through the power of connection by having real conversations about mental health with people in everyday moments – whether it’s with those closest to us, or the coffee barista, parking lot attendant, or the grocery store clerk.

Why Red?

Red is the national color for substance abuse awareness.

Light & Unite Red is a community-wide prevention committee led by the Milwaukee County Behavioral Health Division (BHD). In 2018, nearly 50 community organizations, surrounding health departments, high schools, libraries and government entities are working together to shine a spotlight on the dangers of substance use and to unite our community to engage in prevention, encourage treatment and support recovery throughout the year.

Light & Unite Red logo

Shine a Light on Social Media

#414GoesRed | #LightUniteRed

Light & Unite Red Toolkit

Everything you need to empower safe, healthy, meaningful lives through the power of prevention.

  • 211info

    (iOS Android)

    211 is an important, national hotline for people who need help with just about anything. Shelter, warmth, broken furnace, addiction, mental health crisis, all can be helped by 211. Now, the national 211 group has an app to make connecting to help even easier.
    A Friend Asks

    (iOS | Android)

    "A Friend Asks" is a free app that helps provide resources and information if you or a friend are struggling with thoughts of suicide.

    (iOS | Android)

    If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide, My3 helps you define your network and your plan to stay safe, or to help others do the same.

    (iOS Android)

    It's okay to be notOK. The notOK app is a free, mental health S.O.S. call. Simply open the app, tap the "notOK" button, and a text message along with your current GPS location will be sent to your pre-selected contacts.
  • Myth-Shattering Resources

    National Drug & Alcohol Fact Week (NDAFW) site

    NDAFW Resources
  • Full Toolkit Here

Light & Unite Red Community Partners

Milwaukee County Behavioral Health Division | Milwaukee County Department of Health and Human Services | Oak Creek Health Department | Aids Resource Center of Wisconsin | Greenfield Health Department | WAWM Community Coalition | Tobacco-Free Suburban Milwaukee Counties | Hales Corners Health Department | Milwaukee Fire Department | AIDS Resource Center Of Wisconsin | South Milwaukee Health Department | Children's Community Health Plan | Volition Franklin \ City of Franklin Health Department | Village of Greendale | North Shore Health Department | Greendale Health Department | West Allis Fire Department | Starting Point | Wauwatosa Health Department | Milwaukee Fire Department | Wauwatosa School District | University of WI Milwaukee | Team HAVOC & MKE Heroin Diaries | Community Advocates | City of Milwaukee | City of Greenfield | Washington Ozaukee HD | Vessels of God | Families Moving Forward/ Manna Behavioral Services | MSI | CUPH - UWM | Community Advocates | Washington Ozaukee HD | New Plan Life Services | Assata High School | Milwaukee Public Schools- Auer Avenue | Wraparound Milwaukee| WestCare | Milwaukee Public Schools - Hopkins Lloyd | Hepatha Lutheran Chuck | Milwaukee College Prep School | COA | Hopwell Ministries | Pastors United | Dominican Center | Keefe Avenue / Boys & Girls Clubs | MICAH | Catholic Campaign for Social Justice

Alcohol Awareness Month

April 1-30, 2020

Help for Today, Hope for Tomorrow

Founded and sponsored by the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (now Facing Addiction with NCADD), Alcohol Awareness Month was established in 1987 to help reduce the stigma so often associated with alcohol addiction by encouraging communities to reach out to the American public each April with information about alcohol, alcohol addiction, and recovery. Alcohol addiction is a chronic, progressive disease, genetically predisposed and fatal if untreated. However, people can and do recover. In fact, it is estimated that as many as 20 million individuals and family members are living lives in recovery from alcohol use!


1 in 12

One in twelve adults, or 17.6 million Americans, suffer from alcohol use disorder or alcohol dependence according to




Mental Health Month

May 1-31, 2020

Get Involved

This May, BHD is proud to partner with Mental Health America to recognize Mental Health Month by promoting Fitness #4Mind4Body. We know taking care of both mental and physical health contributes to a person’s overall wellness — and we want your help to share this with people whose health you care about.



Throughout May, BHD will share a #4Mind4Body challenge on our FacebookInstagram and Twitter pages encouraging you to make small changes that will make a big impact on your overall wellness. We encourage you to share your progress online using #4Mind4Body.

In Person

Several of our community partners will host free community events to promote Fitness #4Mind4Body. We encourage you to participate wherever you are able and share these with your networks.


1220 W. Vliet St.

Suite 301

Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53205

Our Vision

Together, creating healthy communities.

Our Mission

Empowering safe, healthy, meaningful lives.

Our Values

Partnership, Respect, Integrity, 

Diversity, Excellence

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