(ATLANTIC) Southwest Iowa Mental Health Center has been providing school-based mental health services for a number of years to the CAM and Atlantic school districts. This past spring an opportunity to expand services to other area school districts was identified. Superintendents of Griswold, Audubon and Exira/EHK school districts were contacted about participation and all enthusiastically agreed.
School-based mental health services are very similar to the outpatient mental health services provided at SWIMHC’s main office. A therapist or counselor is assigned to the school district and will spend time on campus providing therapeutic services to children.
A significant benefit is that children who would typically miss more than an hour of the school day to attend a session at the main office will now miss less than an hour but receive the same service. Additionally, parents will not have to miss work to retrieve their child from school and take them to the main office. For parents of children in school districts outside of Atlantic, this could mean not missing two to three hours of work as well as saving in transportation costs.
SWIMHC has hired Lila Stephens, provisionally licensed mental health counselor, to provide services. She enjoys working with children and jumped at the chance to join SWIMHC for this opportunity. Karen Gard, LMHC will continue to provide services to the CAM school district. Other therapists/counselors will be utilized depending on the demand for services.
If parents are interested in having their child participate, they are encouraged to contact SWIMHC at 712-243-2606 or 800-458-4403 to begin the enrollment process.