Mental Health Awareness Patch Program


Millions of Americans are affected by mental health conditions every year. Mental illness is a brain disorder, which is a medical condition just like other physical illness. There is no simple test that can let someone know if there is mental illness and these can begin to develop at any age, some as early as a child in elementary school. If a friend or family member is showing signs of mental illness, reach out to a trusted adult, to help that person get help. Learning all about mental health and mental illness is an important first step.

The Mental Health Awareness Patch addresses the following learning objectives:  

  1. Girls Scouts will define the difference between mental health and mental illness.
  2. Girl Scouts will examine the brain and its influence on thoughts, feelings, and behavior associated with mental illness.  
  3. Girls Scouts will describe common signs, treatment, and ways to live well in recovery for a variety of mental health conditions.
  4. Girl Scouts will identify their role in promoting mental health awareness and reducing the stigma.  
  5. Girl Scouts will explore local, state, and national resources that help people living with mental illness and their families.

The Mental Health Awareness Patch was initially created by International Bipolar Foundation (IBPF). IBPF is a nonprofit based in San Diego that was founded by parents of children with bipolar disorder. Their mission is to improve understanding and treatment of bipolar disorder through research; to promote care and support services for individuals and caregivers; and to erase stigma through education. This learning packet has been adapted by National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Fox Valley in collaboration with the Girls Scout of the Northwestern Great Lakes in support from the Women’s Fund of the Fox Valley Region.

Daisies, Brownies, Juniors, Cadettes, and Seniors/Ambassadors can earn the patch. The patch was originally designed for the Girl Scouts of the United States of America and is also available to other similar organizations such as Girl Guides. Once earned, the patch is provided for free by IBPF. To request patches, fill out the survey at

You will need the following information:

  1. The dates you started and ended the program.
  2. Your contact information, including troop number and service area.
  3. Where you heard about the patch program.
  4. Descriptions of the activities you completed with your troop.  Patches will be mailed directly to the address submitted on the survey.