UnitedHealthcare Donates $40,000 to the Boys & Girls Club of Washington to Fund Youth Mental Health Programs

May 15, 2017

Matt Watrous, executive director of Boys & Girls Clubs Washington, was recently presented with a $40,000 check by Cindy Spain of UnitedHealthcare Community Plan to fund youth mental health programs. Many Boys & Girls Clubs of King County members participated in the event (Photo: Kim Doyel).

UnitedHealthcare Community Plan donated $40,000 to the Boys & Girls Club of Washington to fund youth mental health programs.

The donation will fund programs that include anti-bullying, anti-drug and peer-support initiatives that help build self-confidence, and programs focused on physical activity and proper nutrition.

"UnitedHealthcare is grateful for the opportunity to support the Boys & Girls Club of Washington's mental health programs that can have a positive impact on children's health and quality of life," said Doug Bowes, CEO of UnitedHealthcare Community Plan, which provides free Boys & Girls Club memberships to children who are enrolled in its Medicaid plans.

Youth mental health is a growing national concern and can put many children and teens at increased risk of substance abuse, dropping out of school, involvement in the juvenile justice system and suicide. Studies show that about half of Americans will meet the criteria for a diagnosable mental health disorder sometime in their life, with first onset usually in childhood or adolescence1. Early engagement and support are crucial to improving outcomes for mental health conditions, such as depression or anxiety, that affect a person's thinking, feeling or mood.

"We appreciate UnitedHealthcare's continued support for our efforts to address mental health," said Matt Watrous, executive director of Boys & Girls Clubs of Washington. "This funding will enable us to provide a safe environment to educate young people about the importance of good mental health and healthy lifestyle choices."

UnitedHealthcare sponsored the Washington State Youth of the Year event earlier this spring. This program promotes and recognizes youth across the state for their service to the Boys & Girls Club and the community, and reinforces the effectiveness of Boys & Girls Clubs and how they provide essential resources to the communities they serve.

Boys & Girls Club of Washington, which serves nearly 80,000 young people statewide, inspires and enables kids to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. The clubs provide a safe place for young people to learn and experience life-enhancing programs and character development.

UnitedHealthcare serves over 1 million Washington residents with a network of 97 hospitals and more than 38,000 physicians and other care providers statewide.

About Boys & Girls Clubs of Washington

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Washington exist to inspire & enable all young people to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. Professional staff and volunteers use a combination of locally developed programs and those developed and tested nationally by Boys & Girls Clubs of America in the following Program Impact Areas: Academic Success, Character & Citizenship, and Healthy Lifestyles. Currently, 79,013 Washington state youth in grades K-12 are served through annual membership and over 45,000 youth through community outreach. There are programs currently offered at 150 separate locations, including Clubhouses, native lands, public housing, schools and community centers.

About UnitedHealthcare

UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. The company offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers, military service members, retirees and their families, and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with more than 1 million physicians and care professionals, and 6,000 hospitals and other care facilities nationwide. UnitedHealthcare is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH), a diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company. For more information, visit UnitedHealthcare at or follow @myUHC on Twitter.