CarePlus 40th Anniversary Honors Masciandaro

The CarePlus Foundation will hold its 20th Annual Courage Awards Gala on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 at the Venetian in Garfield, to benefit the clients and programs of CarePlus NJ.

As the organization’s largest fundraiser of the year, the Gala celebrates those who tirelessly advocate on behalf of the mental health community. This year, Joseph Masciandaro is being honored for his exemplary leadership and service at CarePlus for the past 40 years setting the standard and raising the bar for excellence and compassion in behavioral healthcare.

Masciandaro began his journey as President and CEO of Mid-Bergen Community Mental Health Center in 1978, which evolved into CarePlus in 1998 during the merger with Fair Lawn Mental Health Center. Throughout the years, the many programs and services of CarePlus have addressed various needs in the community for adults, children, and families from every walk of life.

“There are no words to express the important role that Joe Masciandaro has played in the development of the community mental health system throughout the years,” explained Mary Ann Uzzi, co-chair of the 2018 Courage Awards Gala. “He truly is a visionary. His dedication to advocacy exemplifies his commitment to comprehensive and compassionate care.”

Over the four decades under Masciandaro’s leadership, the organization has impacted countless lives. As an early provider of community-based services for the severely ill, Mid-Bergen eased the process of deinstitutionalization. Soon after Masciandaro became Executive Director, the organization began serving those dually-diagnosed with mental health and substance abuse disorders.

With the official name change to CarePlus, the organization set a new standard for a complete continuum of care for children, families and adults. The evolution continues to this day, with new grants continually being pursued and awarded, allowing for the creation of programs that fill the gaps within the system.

“We are the ones who are honored to celebrate all that Joe has accomplished through Mid-Bergen and CarePlus throughout the last 40 years,” Uzzi continued. “He has shown us what is possible when you think outside of the box. His example has inspired many behavioral health professionals who continue to break the mold and improve the lives of many.”

Proceeds from the Courage Awards are dispersed to those enrolled in CarePlus services through a variety of channels, including: educational scholarships, housing and medication assistance, substance abuse treatment, outpatient services and therapy for children and adults, as well as advocacy and community education.

Registration includes a cocktail hour, dinner, live and silent auctions, a 50/50 raffle and the opportunity to honor those who serve our community. Attendees are expected from across the state, including local community partners, state representatives and supporters from the Northern New Jersey business community. Individual tickets are available at $200 each, with full tables of 10 offered for $1,750.

For more information, to sponsor or register please visit or contact the Foundation Office at 201-986-5070.