2019 was an extraordinary year! Each year brings new projects, new challenges and new people to our lives, while each day brings new stories of hope, strength and love.

We wanted to recap some of the things that topped this year that will make a difference in the health of people throughout our region in 2020 and beyond:

Lou Ann!

We got a dog! Lou Ann is our animal-assisted therapy ambassador and therapy dog-in-training. We rescued her in March from Arrow Heart’s Rescue in Elk River when she was three months old. She spent her first three months in less-than-ideal conditions in Arkansas. Lou Ann has passed the Canine Good Citizen test and is working on becoming a certified therapy dog. . The positive impact of animals in a healthcare setting is well-known, and the Miller-Dwan Foundation is committed to providing patients the chance to heal in the company of dogs and cats. Until Lou Ann is fully certified, she spends some of her time in the Miller-Dwan Foundation office, as well as walking around practicing being calm and relaxed. Be sure to follow her on Instagram to keep tabs on her daily activities as a puppy living her best life in the Northland.

ARTcetera 2019: A Rehab Revolution

This year’s ARTcetera moved POS+Ability to Reality, raising more than $302,000 after expenses for the Polinsky Medical Rehabilitation Center. Polinsky is well on its way to bigger and better –– bigger space, a better location and more specialty clinicians giving us the opportunity to add additional state-of-the-art services. Watch for Polinsky updates as we move forward, and take a look at this powerful video that kicked off the campaign:


We have partnered with the Lake Superior Community Health Center to provide mental health services to farming families across the Northland. This is an important and untapped need, as life and work on the farm is becoming more stressful than ever. These services will be a nontraditional therapeutic model of care, with services offered in an “urgent care” model, where a farmer may receive immediate support telephonically, without a diagnostic assessment and without a regular appointment schedule.

Mental Health Services in Northwestern WI

A new mental health program is up and running in Superior, WI. The program, called Partial Hospitalization Programming (PHP), is a multi-disciplinary, group-based, intensive psychotherapeutic program for adults who are struggling with mental illness and substance abuse. Programming takes place for six hours a day, five days a week, for up to three weeks. No overnight stays. And it will all happen in the newly transformed healing environment on the lower level of St. Mary’s Hospital -Superior.

Amberwing First Annual Mindfulness Camp

Amberwing staff held three different mindfulness camps during the summer, as well as two back-to-school preparation camps for different age groups. The campers spent the afternoons at Amberwing participating in crafts, games and outdoor fun to practice Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) skills.

We moved!

We moved our office to the Lobby Level of the Miller-Dwan Building, about 20 steps away from Lakewinds Cafeteria. We are still getting situated and unpacked but it is already feeling like home. We plan to have an open house (with snacks!) once we are all settled in. In the meantime, stop by and visit us anytime!

Watch for our upcoming publication, More Than Numbers, to arrive in your mailbox in January. It encompasses all the incredible work that took place in 2019 because of your generosity.

Thanks for being along side of us for 2019, making every day truly extraordinary. We look forward to great things in 2020!

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Together we will realize our shared vision of a community free from mental health crisis.