Mental Health Association of Rockland County Teams with CogniFit to Receive Most Innovative Mental Health Association Recognition

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“Smart Brain, Strong Brain, Fit Brain” Project Takes 4th Place Overall for SharpBrains Brain Fitness Innovation Competition

“We knew that we were doing something that hadn’t been seen before when we first started the project”

CogniFit™, Inc., a leading maker of brain fitness software(http://www.cognifit.com), announced today that the Mental Health Association (MHA) of Rockland County was named “Most Innovative Mental Health Association” and was a finalist in the SharpBrains 2010 Brain Fitness Innovation Awards for its “Smart Brain, Strong Brain, Fit Brain” project. The Brain Fitness Innovation Awards seek to honor the best and most innovative brain activity programs in the country. The MHA of Rockland County project, which was made possible by a contribution from CogniFit and a grant from the New York State Department for the Aging, took fourth place out of 40 competing projects. The United States Hockey Association took first place in the competition.

CogniFit and longevity expert Adriane Berg joined forces to create the ground-breaking Smart Brain, Strong Brain, Fit Brain cognitive fitness program for the MHA of Rockland County in October 2009, aiming to help seniors in the Rockland County region sharpen their mental abilities, improving their overall well-being. Through this project, 500 residents from Rockland County between the ages of 62 and 90 are participating in an 18-month brain training program using CogniFit Personal Coach software.

“I feel like we are the ‘mouse that roared,’ winning such high honors in the company of the United States Hockey Association (the grand prize winner) and two of the nation’s largest insurance companies (sharing second and third prize),” said Dr. Karen Oates, Director of the Mental Health Association who manages the Project. “This recognition proves that the older adult and our approach to this community are clearly in the national interest. This Project promotes Rockland County to the forefront of age-friendly venues because it provides a structure for educating residents to maintain lifelong mental wellness and cognitive engagement helping to support healthy aging.”

“We knew that we were doing something that hadn’t been seen before when we first started the project,” said Berg. “To have it recognized by SharpBrains, who is such an authority on brain fitness, is exciting and an honor. Hopefully this will lead to more awareness for brain fitness, and other counties developing similar programs down the road.”

CogniFit Personal Coach provides scientifically validated cognitive training. Unlike many programs that use only basic information such as age and gender to develop a training program, CogniFit Personal Coach begins with a baseline assessment to gauge the user’s mental strengths and weaknesses. Users then engage in exercises designed to train their brain in the most effective way possible. The training is highly personalized and tailored to meet the specific needs of individuals, continually adjusting to deliver a training level that is optimal for the user; challenging, but not so difficult that the user abandons their training.

The SharpBrains 2010 Brain Fitness Awards were presented on May 24, 2010 by CEO Alvaro Fernandez. Projects were evaluated by a distinguished panel of judges.

About the Mental Health Association of Rockland County

The MHA is a voluntary, non-profit organization. By providing direct service and advocates for legislation and programs, our mission lives in the prevention of mental illness through community outreach.
The MHA of Rockland County continuously works to improve present services and develop new services that enable our community toward mental wellness. As a member of United Way of Rockland County, the MHA operates the following programs in public service: For more information call (845) 267-2172 (845) 267-2172 ext. 320

About SharpBrains

SharpBrains is an independent market research firm and think tank covering the emerging brain fitness market. Its flagship industry report The State of the Brain Fitness Software Market and consumer guide The SharpBrains Guide to Brain Fitness help decision makers and consumers navigate the emerging brain fitness field based on evidence-based information and independent analysis. The organization also hosts the 3-day online global and virtual SharpBrains Summit, a first of its kind conference, engaging professionals across the globe on the state of cognitive fitness research, technology and market trends. SharpBrains.com, the firm's educational blog and website, is a member of the Scientific American Partner Network

About CogniFit

CogniFit was founded in 1999 with the goal of using the latest cognitive research to help people of all ages maintain and improve their quality of life through brain fitness. CogniFit offers training programs for a wide range of cognitive abilities needed for everyday functioning. CogniFit programs also train specific cognitive skills needed for activities such as driving, learning, and reading.

CogniFit brain fitness programs start with a baseline assessment of the cognitive abilities before creating personalized training programs. CogniFit's scientifically validated, patented brain fitness programs are personalized to each user to help them enhance their cognitive performance and health.

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Jessica Harrison

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