Library Partners with Smoky Mountain Center for Information Session on Mental Healthcare AccessMay is Mental Health Month and on May 24th at 6:30 p.m. in the Community Room of the Jackson County Public Library there will be an information session on mental health services in Jackson County. Co-sponsored by the Library and the Smoky Mountain Center, the panel discussion will include representatives from a variety of local agencies that provide mental health services. They will explain who they serve, how to access those services, and answer questions from the public.
Finding mental healthcare can be difficult because people don’t always know where to turn and are sometimes hesitant to ask for help either for themselves or for a family member. In addition, different age groups and conditions may require more specialized care. And while there are several agencies that provide mental health services in our area, details about how to find the right provider or program are not always clear to people in crisis or their family members. The panel discussion at the Library will briefly explain how the system works and how to find help.
In crafting a new 5-year strategic plan, Fontana Regional Library has focused on identifying community needs and priorities. Our goal is to work in partnership with other groups and agencies to support our local communities as they address their top priorities for a vibrant future. The Library’s strategic plan will focus on these common areas of interest.
In surveys and discussions with community members, county and municipal leaders, and community agencies, we have found remarkable agreement that there are several areas important to the future of Jackson, Macon, and Swain Counties and their residents. Health and mental health support is a clear priority. In particular, the mental health services landscape is a complicated one, and the public is not always sure where to turn when help is needed. As an information and resource center, the Library aims to help bridge the knowledge gap and link people and services. This panel discussion is one way to do that.
The following local organizations will be represented: Smoky Mountain Center (now Vaya Health), Meridian Behavioral Health, Appalachian Community Services, Western Carolina University Counseling and Psychological Services, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), and the Children’s Developmental Services Agency.
An information table will be set up with brochures and printed information, and all attendees will have an opportunity to ask the panelists questions. Marsha Crites will serve as moderator for the discussion.
For more information, please call the Jackson County Public Library at 586-2016.