Did you know that as many as one in five U.S. adults – and one in six U.S. children – is impacted by a mental health condition each year? In Douglas County, about 19% reported poor mental health, according to the Colorado Health Institute’s Health Access Survey. Many more listed better mental health programs as a top priority in the 2023 Douglas County Citizen Survey.
Knowing that access to information and resources, as well as community engagement, can help fight the stigma that for too long has surrounded the topic of mental health, the Board of Douglas County Commissioners adopted a resolution at their May 9 Business Meeting recognizing May as Mental Health Awareness Month.
“Those numbers include our neighbors, friends and family members,” said Commissioner Lora Thomas. “Douglas County is on the leading edge of providing mental health services for its citizens. We remain committed to shining a light on mental health conditions, fighting stigma, and providing resources. There is help and there is hope in Douglas County.”
If you, a friend, or family member seem to be having more bad days than good, know that it is ok to reach out and ask for help:
- Visit the Douglas County Mental Health Initiative’s resources webpage.
- If you are looking for a mental health checkup for your child, visit ImatterColorado.org for a free assessment and access to free counseling.
- People who need immediate support due to a mental health crisis should contact Colorado Crisis Services – call 1.844.493.TALK(8255) or text TALK to 38255. This agency has trained counselors who are available 24/7/365 to work with persons in crisis and the people supporting them.
In spring 0f 2014, Douglas County formed the Douglas County Mental Health Initiative to collaboratively address unmet mental health needs. Today, that initiative is more than 50 members strong and includes several programs to help people with mental and behavioral health, including the County’s Community Response Teams, Care Compact, and more.
The Board of Douglas County Commissioners has also dedicated about $9 million of its American Rescue Plan Act (APRA) allocations to mental and behavioral health programming, including investments in Veterans’ mental health services, an all-ages Walk-In Crisis Center, a Child and Adolescent Crisis Stabilization Unit, suicide prevention, Community Response Team and Care Compact expansion, community education, and funding to support the new 9-8-8 crisis and support line implementation. Learn more on our ARPA web page.