Program expands mental health and substance abuse services to rural communities in Northern NV.

GARDNERVILLE, Nev. (KOLO) – November is Men’s Mental Health and Chicanos Por La Causa (CPLC), an organization that advocates for underserved individuals and communities, has branched out to help those that are facing mental health challenges in rural Northern Nevada.

Through a state-funded grant, they have opened two Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (Douglas and Mineral County) that provide person-centered, family-centered care, using evidence-based practices to empower individuals through accessible healthcare.

From a young age, Woodrow Askin has dealt with mental health problems and substance abuse.

“I used to use drugs and had depression issues,” he said.

In his journey to recovery, he found there was a need for awareness.

“There was a lack of information about the connection with mental health and substance abuse,” said Askin. “Many men think that that’s the only path is to use drugs and alcohol to cope when things go wrong and it’s just not true.”

In an effort to help himself, he started volunteering and that led him to become the lead peer supporter at Thrive CPLC Nevada Inc. in Gardnerville.

The facility opened in 2021 and is one of CPLC subsidiaries. Executive director, Colleen Lawrence, EJD told KOLO8 News Now that one of its essential services is a 24/7 crisis support line, which works in partnership with the local school system and sheriff’s office.

“We were able to secure a SAMHSA grant for Northern Nevada, particularly in the rural area,” she said. “When somebody is in a crisis, you want to be able to respond in your most optimal state and by doing that, it’s by having every partner come to the table and be able to respond together.”

The center accepts walk-ins and it includes family-friendly therapy rooms, even for those with sensory needs a Zen room, where individuals can stabilize during a crisis.

Thrive also offers telehealth, individual and family group therapy, psychoeducational classes, adulting one on one classes, substance-use prevention classes, medication management, psychiatry and peer support classes.

“Sometimes is better to hear something from a peer supporter, right?” said Lawrence. “I want to hear something from somebody who’s been through it. Has to walk the walk, talk the talk.”

Services are currently free, and those interested in an intake can go by the center (1380 US Highway 395N Gardenville, NV 89410) from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

According to Lawrence some of the biggest needs in the community include, making sure mental health providers aren’t burned out, and assisting the bilingual community. Thrive is experiencing a shortage of bilingual therapists, however, they do have translation services available.

The center is available for any child, teen or adult in need and it doesn’t take appointments for intakes. If you or someone you know is in crisis, call 833-240-9017.

Services will be free until around late February when the grant runs out. After that, Thrive will look for other grants or look into reaching out to Medicare. Lawrence said still people should not hesitate to seek services.

“We want to make sure they’re still walking through our door and we will figure it out.”