May is Mental Health Awareness Month and Linn County wants to ensure everyone knows it is okay to not be okay. Mental health is vital to an individual’s overall health and well-being, and mental illnesses are common and treatable. Everyone encounters challenges in their life that affects their mental health, with 1 in 5 individuals experiencing mental illness.
During this month of awareness, providers are encouraging individuals to learn about practical tools for improving personal mental health and reducing the stigma around mental health overall. Mental Health America put together “Tools 2 Thrive” to allow for easy access to resources for mental health.
In addition to this national toolkit, Linn County has multiple resources available for those wanting to improve their mental health or to get treatment for a mental illness, including the recently opened Mental Health Access Center (MHAC).
The Mental Health Access Center provides crisis care for people experiencing a mental health or substance use disorder crisis that requires immediate attention. Providers quickly assess your situation, provide services and supports to help alleviate your crisis and connect you to community-based services. There are four providers “housed” within the MHAC including Abbe Health, Area Substance Abuse Council (ASAC), Foundation 2, and the Penn Center.
“We are so excited to have our doors finally open for walk-in hours to serve the community,” says Mental Health Access Center Director Erin Foster. “We have worked so hard over the last several years to put together a place where people in crisis do not need to feel ashamed about reaching out for help. We want you to know that it’s Ok to not be Ok and we’re here to help during that time.”
Currently, the Mental Health Access Center offers daytime walk-in hours Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. No appointment is necessary.