Serving the community since 1922

Embracing mental wellness at event

College Community Services, Wasco Child, will celebrate May Mental Health Awareness Month with an event on Friday, May 17. The organization is an outpatient community-based mental health clinic that provides services to children, adolescents and families struggling with mental illness, substance use challenges and other life struggles.

Patty Ortega is the lead clinician. "The purpose of the event is to allow the community to gain free access to education about mental health, to start conversations about mental health and to put our name out there for anybody that might need access to resources and services."

At the May Mental Health Awareness Event, there will be food, booths where the community can come and see what services they provide, education on mental health diagnoses and substance use and activities for children to engage in. All information also will be provided in Spanish.

Ortega said Mental Health Awareness Month is important. "A large portion of the population that we serve are Latino, and culturally, there is still a stigma when it comes to mental health. We want to reduce that stigma and normalize these conversations to allow people to get help when needed. We all have mental health, and we all need support during difficult times in our lives."

It is their second annual event. "Living in a small community, we want to continue to make it known that we are a resource to the people who live here and that we have these annual events to make us visible to families who may be in need."

Organizers hope all segments of th community will come out. "We want to increase our visibility to community partnerships to better coordinate care and improve the community's knowledge of resources that can be beneficial to them," Ortega said.

The event will be held at 820 6th St. from 3 to 5 p.m. For more information, call 661-758-4029.


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