After approval of mental health grant in Evansville, here’s how some of it will be used

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Published: Mar. 4, 2022 at 6:33 PM CST
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - On Monday, February 28, Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke proposed a mental health funding plan to the city council.

The proposal was passed, and representatives from Southwestern Behavioral Healthcare, United Caring Services and Easterseals held a press conference Friday morning to not only celebrate, but to expand on where the funds will be allotted.

The largest sum was $10 million, which was granted to Southwestern Behavioral Healthcare, who says that $6 million of it will go toward renovating their building on Mulberry Plaza to better serve the community.

The other $4 million will go toward “renovation and start-up costs of the center that that is for children and families, the children that have the dual diagnosis,” said Southwestern Behavioral Healthcare President and CEO Katy Adams.

“So we are talking now about several non-for-profits coexisting in that building, specifically Easterseals and Southwestern,” said Adams, “to provide those services for families and a training site for our future professionals.”

Easterseals President Kelley Schneider says that it’s important to note that all three of these organizations are working together.

“Our goal with all of these projects is to ensure that we are filling gaps,” said Schneider, “and not duplicating services, so we all have our own unique piece.”

Easterseals received $150,000 to expand their services for children and adults with disabilities seeking mental health services.

Another organization that received funding is United Carding Services, who accepted $300,000 to help with crises diversion amongst the homeless population and offering help for people that they may not have had the resources or manpower to do before.

“I think every person deserves that opportunity,” said Emmerson, “whether it’s the first ask or the tenth ask, we can’t let them down because we’re tired.”

Adams is shooting for a two-to-three year window before the renovations on the Mulberry Plaza location is complete, but she says that anybody can still come in and receive care.

“Our crisis unit is open now, our services are open now,” said Adams, “for those that have the gaps in the community, we are doing our best to fill those gaps until these programs are open.”

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