JBRF Goes Virtual

As a world we learned a lot of lessons in 2020. One of them was that geography doesn't have to dictate how we work anymore. JBRF is dedicated to issues of mental health and mental illness, and we've always known that mental illness does not have a geographical epicenter. Now, JBRF doesn't either, and this is helping us go further towards fulfilling our mission.

Closing a Door Opens a Window


In 2020 JBRF, like many organizations, closed the doors of our brick and mortar location to allow our employees to work from the safety of their homes throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.


As a result, we saw how this streamlined our work, and enhanced our ability to expand on a national level.

Our family support groups and advocacy programs, as well as our practitioner outreach, include participants from places as far flung as Alabama, California, Kansas, Michigan, North Dakota, New Jersey, Minnesota, South Carolina, and Oregon (to name only a few!). We've conducted research in New York and Massachusetts, and have board members and staff in places as diverse as Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, and even Germany.


In early 2021 we closed our White Plains, NY office permanently, and haven't looked back since.

Change that Stays on Mission

JBRF's executive director, Elizabeth Errico, is based in Hawaii and shares that this location, while far from the organization's origins in the New York area, is really integrated with JBRF's mission. "Our research on temperature dysregulation, and our experience working with families suffering with Fear of Harm, has shown us over and over how important stable temperatures are for successful symptom remission."


Ms. Errico moved to Hawaii, one of the places in the United States with the most stable temperatures, in part to put that theory into practice. "Many people know that I have a child with Fear of Harm," Ms. Errico tells us. "The northeast was a nightmare in terms of temperature. 30 or 40 degree temperature swings from morning to afternoon during the spring and fall made it impossible to keep body temperature steady. The bitter cold in the winter triggered overheating just as much as the oppressive humidity in the summer. We worried true long term stability was unrealistic there."


Moving to Hawaii was a gamble, but one she and her family believe paid off. "Not only has this move played a crucial role in improving our child's well-being, it's reinforced for me how sound our message to parents and practitioners is. We're living proof that stabilizing body temperature improves treatment outcomes."

Adjusting to the New World

The shift of JBRF's base of operations might have taken some people by surprise. But, Ms. Errico reports that people are adapting well and that it hasn't slowed the organization down one bit. "We're just as effective as ever." Tried and true technologies such as email and teleconferencing have integrated with newer applications such as Zoom, Calendly, and social media platforms to make communications even quicker and easier than ever before. Ms. Errico describes the ease of this work saying, "I can email my colleague who's 6 hours ahead of me in time zones, she can access my calendar while I'm asleep, and we're ready for a videoconference first thing the next morning without any time lost. Honestly, we're a leaner and more efficient organization."


Through JBRF's website you can find multiple ways of contacting the organization, and it now lists two locations where mail can be sent. JBRF is able to route its regular business through its address in Irvine, CA, while the fundraising efforts (and its accompanying mailing address) are now directed to Hawaii where Ms. Errico is based. "It's important for me to be the first one to collect correspondence from our supporters, to be able to visit the print shop and mailing house, and to oversee all donor communications personally."


Throughout all of these changes JBRF remains as focused as ever on conducting cutting edge research, bringing essential information to families and practitioners, and to providing support to families who are still struggling. "Where we are doesn't change who we are. No matter what, we're still JBRF."




Product of the Month

June's Featured Product:

 Cool Time Neck Collar


Be ready for a hot summer with this tool for cooling that's quick and easy to use! The Cool Time Neck Collar requires no battery, no charging, and it will start freezing at any temperature below 18 degrees! Originally developed for NASA, the Cool Time Neck Collar will stay cool for up to 2 hours, delivering safe icy coolness to the neck, helping all that built up body heat to escape. 


Mom, Danielle, tells other JBRF parents why this is such a great product for her son with Fear of Harm:


"My son said it's his favorite cooling product to date! It doesn't need to be wrapped in anything because the gel inside doesn't get pure ice cold. He retrieves it from the freezer multiple times by himself and tells me he loves that it's small and it stays on so easily. I'm going to buy a few more!"


JBRF supports children and families suffering from bipolar disorder and

Fear of Harm through research, education, and outreach.

Sent by ::organization::

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