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Prioritizing Mental Healthcare at Goodwill Columbus’ Work and Community Services!

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and at Goodwill Columbus’ Work & Community Services (WCS), our team prioritizes mental healthcare. WCS specializes in serving adults with developmental disabilities, mental health, and behavioral challenges, with the majority of participants having been dually diagnosed.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that adults with disabilities experience frequent mental distress five times as often as adults without disabilities. Recognizing this disparity, WCS focuses on addressing mental health needs within its community.

At WCS, mental health is a priority across all services. The program provides foundational trauma-informed care training to all employees. Additionally, WCS employs a mental health therapist and a Registered Nurse who offer individual and group counseling, ensuring comprehensive support for participants.

WCS programming supports several areas:

  1. Communication Skills: Participants learn effective communication techniques.
  2. Emotional Regulation: Strategies for managing emotions are taught.
  3. Stress and Anger Indicators: Identifying physical signs of stress and anger.
  4. Positive Relationships: Building connections within the community.
  5. Emotional Awareness: Recognizing and understanding emotions.
  6. Positive Decision-Making: Encouraging healthy choices.
  7. Holistic Mental Health Management: Providing diverse outlets for well-being.

One of WCS’s innovative approaches to mental health improvement is through music. WCS offers a choir and music instrument lessons. Singing and playing instruments provide emotional release, reduce stress, and foster a sense of belonging. Regular karaoke parties and arts productions allow participants to express themselves creatively. And with collaborations with The Harmony Project, individuals join The Harmony Community Arts Program singing and performing with others in the community and create opportunities for friendships and teamwork.

Goodwill Columbus’ Work & Community Services exemplifies the transformative impact of prioritizing mental health. Through music and community engagement, WCS empowers individuals to thrive, fostering well-being and resilience.

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