Since the start of the pandemic, more and more people are talking about mental health. An increasing number of folks are starting to see it for what it is: one important component of your overall health and well-being, just like your physical health. But mental health conditions, resources, and conversations can still feel complicated and out of reach.
The Mental Health Association in Wayne County began the year off by addressing mental health in Wayne County. During their Annual Meeting at the Firehouse, a panel which included Sheriff Larry Pierce, Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, Melissa Reese, Eastpointe, Don Neal, Waynesboro Family Clinic, Hal Pickett, Cherry Hospital, and Nancy Moore, Family member, and advocate spoke on the State of Mental Health in Wayne County. Each member stressed that the need for mental health services is growing. Each of these agencies works together to provide training, services, and resources to Wayne County citizens in need. One program that each member spoke about was Crisis Intervention Training or CIT. This is a 40-hour training program that trains first responders to understand people who are experiencing mental health, intellectual/developmental disabilities, and substance use disorder challenges. They learn skills to de-escalate situations, and how to recognize people in crisis so they can get the help they need. It also teaches tools to encourage people who need treatment to access services. This program provided by Eastpointe has been training first responders in Wayne County since 2008. Nancy Moore who has been working with the CIT program from the beginning stated that to date 1,688 officers have been trained in Wayne County.
Waynesboro Family Clinic now has a mobile care unit. The unit goes out in the community seeing clients who are not able to get to the clinic. Waynesboro provides a calendar of where the van will be located on its website or Facebook page. This mobile care unit provides assessments, mental health outpatient treatment, substance abuse outpatient treatment, and medication management.
The Mental Health Association in Wayne County is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to promote, educate and advocate for the mental wellness of all individuals within our community.