TMHATransitions-Mental Health Association (TMHA) has received a $9,000 grant from the Helen & Ronald Dunin Memorial Endowment Fund at The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County (CFSLOCO). This grant will be used for our Supported Employment Program’s Employment Gateway program.

Employment Gateway is paid work experience for adults with mental illness who wish to enter the work force for a 7-week trial period. The opportunity is a blend of paid employment, vocational training, and on-site job coaching that would benefit many of TMHA’s clients who wish to enter the job market in a preliminary, unpressured manner.

The awarded funds will create discrete 7-week terms of employment for 7 clients. The Dunin Fund Award will also ensure that the employment term and job coaching is completely paid for, thus costing the employer nothing and ensuring that our clients receive the initial experience they desire. In the spirit of the Dunin Endowment, the Employment Gateway is meant to provide clients with a leg up in a crucial time of transition, which can often be frustrating and overwhelming.

Through a testamentary gift, former Mayor of the City of San Luis Obispo, Ron Dunin, and his wife Helen established an endowment to help people who are attempting to help themselves. As immigrants, the Dunins were fortunate to receive help and support during critical times in their lives. Their goal by creating the fund was to give back to the community and assist San Luis Obispo County residents in need.

In fifteen years, the CFSLOCO has given out more than $24 million in grants to assist nonprofit agencies. For more information on the CFSLOCO or any funds, call 543-2323 or log onto

Transitions-Mental Health Association is a nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating stigma and promoting recovery and wellness for people with mental illness through work, housing, community and family support services. TMHA operates 30 programs at over 35 locations that reach over 2,000 people and 1,500 families in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties. The emphasis of TMHA’s many services is to teach vital independent living skills, and build a framework for community re-entry through personal empowerment and hands on experience. For over 35 years, TMHA has been dedicated to providing housing, employment, case management and life-skills support to teens and adults with mental illness; and support, resources and education for their loved ones.