Ohio State head coach Ryan Day and his wife, Christina, have teamed up with Nationwide Children’s Hospital to create a fund for pediatric and adolescent mental wellness.
The fund — announced on Wednesday — will help raise awareness, increase education, inspire advocacy and fundraise for mental health.
Ryan and Christina Day are making a bold commitment to extend their social mission to one of the most significant issues facing children and young adults today — mental health.
We’re in a Mental Health Crisis. One in five children has a significantly impairing mental disorder; less than half get the treatment they need. Half of mental health conditions begin by age 14, and 75 percent of mental illness presents by age 24.
The Day Family is getting behind this cause — with Nationwide Children’s Hospital and the national On Our Sleeves movement — to support children and young adults living with mental illness.
It’s time to have an important local and national conversation about our children’s mental health — an often overlooked and vastly underfunded component of pediatric health. And it’s time to raise our voices for this important cause.
Day knows plenty about the importance of mental health, as his father died by suicide when he was just 9 years old. He has been passionate about supporting mental health advocacy, behavioral health research and prevention efforts ever since, which is why his family made a personal contribution of $100,000 to the fund.
“We are excited to join the national ‘On Our Sleeves’ movement in support of children and young adults living with mental illness,” Day said. “There is a vitally important connection between mental health and physical health and we want to help children and young adults who do not wear their thoughts on their sleeves when it comes to mental health issues.”
The fund is now open for donations on the hospital’s website.
“We are grateful for this generous commitment from the Day family,” said Nationwide Children’s Hospital Foundation president Steve Testa. “This fund will have a lasting impact for children and adolescents living with a mental illness, an area that has traditionally been underfunded. By joining our movement, Coach Day and Christina are helping to break stigmas, improve prevention activities, enhance clinical care and create a brighter tomorrow for children and families.”