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Wellness center sees spike in calls related to mental health issues


TO KEEP SCHOOLS SAFE, IT ENCOURAGES PARENTS, TEACHERS AND STUDENTS TO REPORT SAFETY CONCERNS ARE RED FLAGS THAT THEY SEE. THROUGHOUT THE DAY CHANNEL 9 HAS COMMITTED RESOURCES TO A RACING THE STIGMA OF MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES. OUR MESSAGE ALL DAY IS THAT THERE IS HELP AND HOPE, FOR HOURS TODAY WE HOSTED A PHONE BANK STAFFED WITH VOLUNTEERS CONNECTING PEOPLE TO HELP AND RESOURCES. THE MAYOR HAS ALSO DECLARED TODAY MENTAL HEALTH HELP AND HOPE DAY IN THE CITY. AND AS OUR DASHAWN BROWN FOUND OUT ONE WELLNESS CENTER IN OUR AREA SAW A SIGNIFICANT INCREASE IN CALLS TODAY FROM THOSE ASKING FOR HELP. Reporter: ONE OF THE VOLUNTEERS CALLED ME A FEW HOURS AGO AFTER HE NOTICED A DIFFERENCE IN CALLS, I ALSO SPOKE WITH THE AGENCY’S CLINICAL DIRECTOR WHO TOLD ME THEY BROUGHT IN MORE STAFFING TONIGHT JUST TO BE PREPARED. BY THE TIME THEY CALLED US THEY ARE DESPERATE. Reporter: EVERY CALL TO THE GENESIS PROJECT IS CRUCIAL. THE AGENCY FOCUSES ON TOTAL WELLNESS, HELPING WITH TREATMENTS FOR PHYSICAL AND MENTAL ILLNESS. WHEN THEY CALL AN AGENCY LIKE GENESIS PROJECT IT’S BECAUSE THEY HAVE EXHAUSTED EVERY OTHER POSSIBILITY. Reporter: THE CO-OWNER AND CLINICAL DIRECTOR SAYS CALLS TODAY HAVE SPIKED SIGNIFICANTLY FROM PEOPLE WHO SEE OUR EFFORTS A CHANNEL 9 AND WANT HELP. WE ARE GETTING CALLS AND TEXT MESSAGES FROM PEOPLE WHO ARE SUICIDAL AND SAYING I’VE GOT A COUSIN, MY DAUGHTER, AND THEY ARE REACHING OUT BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY. THIS IS HAPPENING TODAY. WE ALL KNOW THERE IS A STIGMA AGAINST SEEKING TREATMENT OR ACKNOWLEDGING THAT YOU ARE STRUGGLING WITH A MENTAL HEALTH ISSUE, SO HAVING THIS HUGE AMOUNT OF ATTENTION AND SPOTLIGHTING AND NORMALIZING OF MENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS IS AMAZING. Reporter: VIC WILLIAMS SAYS HE’S DEALT WITH THE STIGMA, HE WAS DIAGNOSED WITH DEPRESSION YEARS AFTER HIS BROTHER WAS KILLED AND NOW HE HAS BEEN TRAINED TO COUNSEL OTHERS. YOU REALLY DON’T KNOW YOU ARE DEPRESSED. YOU THINK IT’S NORMAL AND YOU, IT’S ALWAYS LIKE WHEN YOU ARE WEARING DARK SHADES AND YOU FORGET YOUR WEARING THE SHADES AND IT JUST LOOKS DARK OUTSIDE. THAT’S WHAT DEPRESSION FEELS LIKE FOR FOLKS WHO ARE STRUGGLING. IF THEY ARE NOT GOING TO REACH OUT TO GENESIS, REACH OUT TO SOMEBODY. Reporter: OUR FOCUS ON THIS DOES NOT STOP TONIGHT, HERE’S A LOOK AT THE COUNTY BY COUNTY GUIDE, A RESOURCE YOU CAN FIND ON THE WSOC SMART PHONE APP THAT WILL CONNECT YOU TO HELP IN YOUR COMMUNITY ANY TIME. YOU CAN ALSO SEE EXTENDED INTERVIEWS AND WATCH ANY OF TONIGHT’S INSPIRING STORIES

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