Contributed by: Brayden Ransom, Communication and Marketing Assistant, Mental Health Connecticut

On Thursday, July 1st, members of Mental Health Connecticut (MHC) joined our friends at ConnectiCare to unveil a custom-made handcrafted Tiki created by Senan Gorman, a local artist who creates wooden sculptures to support charities and other local groups. The gift was created to honor of ConnectiCare’s 40th anniversary and in thanks of their generous “Double the Impact” donation of $31,000 for MHC’s #31DaysofWellness.

Pictured left to right: MHC Board Chair Scott Brabant, MHC President and CEO Luis B. Perez, MHC Dev Co-Chair Laureen, MHC Board member Sean Smedley, MHC Dev Committee member Kim, ConnectiCare President Eric Galvin, Senan Gorman of the Tiki Task Force

“This past year, the COVID-19 pandemic and the fight against systemic racism and oppression has had a profound impact on our mental health. At MHC, we see every day that one of the best investments in our health that we can make is self-care and resiliency. It’s clear that organizations such as ConnectiCare and others recognize the importance of preventative measures for our health, which is critical now more than ever,” said Luis B. Perez, President & CEO of Mental Health Connecticut.

During Mental Health Awareness Month in May, MHC invited Connecticut residents, businesses, and communities to invest in preventative measures that increase resiliency and wellness by bringing back #31DaysOfWellness, this year with the theme of #31Tools2Thrive. The goal was to help individuals build their personalized self-care toolkits while helping to build MHC’s facility reserves through its MHC@Home Fund. ConnectiCare, a leading health plan in Connecticut for 40 years, signed on as MHC’s primary sponsor, and promised to double the impact of the $31,000 fundraising goal.

As a longtime partner of MHC, ConnectiCare chose to support the campaign as in celebration of it’s 40th anniversary and its ongoing commitment to creating healthier futures for Connecticut residents, “We’ve been giving back to the community since we were founded 40 years ago; that sense of service is who we are as a company. We decided to celebrate our anniversary by focusing our support where it’s needed most as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic and mental health is a top priority. We’re delighted to help further MHC’s fundraising during the #31DaysOfWellness campaign,” said Eric Galvin, President, ConnectiCare.

The funds from the campaign go towards the MHC@Home Fund to support MHC’s residential facilities throughout Connecticut. As a CARF Accredited organization, MHC sets and maintains high standards of care for the appearance, function, and warmth of our residential facilities, which are also MHC’s second highest expense. The MHC@Home Fund supports structural repairs or improvements that lie outside the scope of our state-funded contracts.

To show our gratitude, MHC worked with Senan Gorman of the Tiki Task Force to gift Connecticare with a unique tiki statue complete with a dedication plaque.


Gorman transforms downed trees and donated logs into tiki statues. The tikis can symbolize different things but most common is health and prosperity. Gorman donated the creation in honor of Mental Health Month in support of MHC and our campaign.

With the support of 17 fundraisers, 8 sponsors, a whopping 233 donations, and the incredible generosity of ConnectiCare as our Double The Impact Sponsor, this year’s #31DaysofWellness campaign was MHC’s most successful fundraiser to date! We ended the campaign with a grand total of $72,446! We thank our supporters endlessly. A special thank you ConnectiCare for their continued support of MHC and happy 40th anniversary!

Learn more about Senan Gorman and his Tiki Task Force here.