Mental Health, Addiction & Recovery Services Board of Lorain County Announces Fiscal Year 2023 Allocations
LORAIN, OHIO – At its last meeting, the Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services (MHARS) Board of Lorain County’s Board of Directors approved a series of budget allocations to provider agencies for fiscal year 2023.
“As the funding agency for behavioral health services in Lorain County, we value the process of transparency in allocating dollars to the network of behavioral health providers in our area who directly serve individuals and families in need of help,” said MHARS Executive Director Michael Doud. “Approximately 16,000 Lorain County residents received mental health and recovery services across our network in 2020, providing the high level of care we have come to expect in Lorain County.”
Below are the agencies receiving FY23 budget year allocations totaling $14,147,826:
- Applewood Centers Inc.
- Beech Brook
- Bellefaire JCB
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Lorain County
- El Centro
- Far West Center
- Gathering Hope House
- Genesis House Safe Harbor
- Let’s Get Real, Inc.
- Lorain Urban Minority Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Outreach Program (UMADAOP)
- Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Lorain County
- Neighborhood Alliance
- New Directions
- New Sunrise Properties
- The Nord Center
- Road to Hope
- Silver Maple
- Stella Maris
The MHARS Board staff works with its Board of Directors’ Community Planning and Oversight Committee to make budget recommendations to its Finance Committee. The process requires extensive dialogue and collaboration with community partners. Those recommendations are then voted on by the entire board before they become final. Click here to view on our website the board packet containing the budget info referenced above.
About the MHARS Board
The Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services (MHARS) Board of Lorain County brings together the expertise, resources and proud histories of the Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services Board of Lorain County and the Lorain County Board of Mental Health. The people served by mental health and substance use disorder systems have a common goal – recovery. Consolidating the county’s addiction and mental health partners strengthens our ability to coordinate treatment and recovery services, which helps us improve the lives of our clients, their loved ones and the community. Our goal is to maximize delivery of these health services. It means providing the right care, in the right setting, at the right time. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram or connect with us on our website at www.mharslc.org.Learn More
June marks Pride Month in the United States. The Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services (MHARS) Board of Lorain County supports access to services for all community members and understands the impact that support, inclusion and empathy can have. The celebration of Pride symbolizes the recognition, inclusion and vitality of LGBTQIA+ individuals.
To highlight the importance of access to mental health care, affirming services and life-saving support, last year’s National Survey on LGBTQ Youth Mental Health 2021 found that:
- 42% of LGBTQ youth seriously considered attempting suicide in the past year, including more than half of transgender and nonbinary youth.
- 12% of white youth attempted suicide compared to 31% of Native/Indigenous youth, 21% of Black youth, 21% of multiracial youth, 18% of Latinx youth, and 12% of Asian/Pacific Islander youth.
- 94% of LGBTQ youth reported that recent politics negatively impacted their mental health.
- More than 80% of LGBTQ youth stated that COVID-19 made their living situation more stressful — and only 1 in 3 LGBTQ youth found their home to be LGBTQ-affirming.
- 70% of LGBTQ youth stated that their mental health was “poor” most of the time or always during COVID-19.
- 48% of LGBTQ youth reported they wanted counseling from a mental health professional but were unable to receive it in the past year.
- 30% of LGBTQ youth experienced food insecurity in the past month, including half of all Native/Indigenous LGBTQ youth. 75% of LGBTQ youth reported that they had experienced discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity at least once in their lifetime.
- Half of all LGBTQ youth of color reported discrimination based on their race/ethnicity in the past year, including 67% of Black LGBTQ youth and 60% of Asian/Pacific Islander LGBTQ youth.
- 13% of LGBTQ youth reported being subjected to conversion therapy, with 83% reporting it occurred when they were under age 18.
- Transgender and nonbinary youth who reported having pronouns respected by all of the people they lived with attempted suicide at half the rate of those who did not have their pronouns respected by anyone with whom they lived.
- Transgender and nonbinary youth who were able to change their name and/or gender marker on legal documents, such as driver’s licenses and birth certificates, reported lower rates of attempting suicide.
- LGBTQ youth who had access to spaces that affirmed their sexual orientation and gender identity reported lower rates of attempting suicide.
Check out The Trevor Project National Survey to view interactive survey results and to learn more about the relationship between mental health, support and access to affirming services.Learn More
Thanks to everyone who came out and made Drug Take Back Day a success – from those who dropped off their unused medications to those who volunteered and the law enforcement who collected the meds.
In total, 4,047.3 pounds of unused meds were collected, according to the final count.
Here is how much was collected by location:
- Amherst, 556.2 lbs – 29 boxes
- Lorain Police, 540.8 lbs – 26 boxes
- Avon Lake, 253.2lbs – 13 boxes
- Oberlin Police, 250.6 lbs -15 boxes
- Lorain County Sheriff, 430.8 lbs – 32 boxes
- Wellington Police, 173.2 lbs – 10 boxes
- Elyria Police, 333.5 lbs – 24 boxes
- North Ridgeville Police, 309.2 lbs -13 boxes
- Avon Police, 598.6 lbs – 39 boxes
- Grafton Police 186.4 lbs – 13 boxes
- LaGrange Police, 82.2 lbs – 4 boxes
- Columbia Township, 147.4lbs – 8 boxes
- Kipton Police, 24 lbs – 2 boxes
- Sheffield Lake Police, 31.8 lbs – 1 box
- Sheffield Village Police, 36.4 lbs – 1 box
- Vermilion Police, 87 lbs – 6 boxes
Total collected – 4047.3
From Joint Release with The Nord Center:
The Nord Center applied for and was awarded $1.5 million in Congressionally Directed Spending. This request was made through United States Senator Sherrod Brown who worked to make this funding a reality.
This earmarked federal funding underlines of The Nord Center’s commitment to being an active and meaningful participant in the new Lorain County Crisis Receiving Center. The federal funds awarded to this project in combination with the funding received already from the Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services (MHARS) Board of Lorain County , the Lorain County Commissioners, the Nord Family Foundation, and the Bass Family, set the stage in Lorain County for breakthrough behavioral health and substance use disorder crisis care.
This center, based on a best practice model used successfully elsewhere in the country, will expand the County’s capacity to provide inpatient detoxification services and revolutionize the care continuum for behavioral health and substance use disorder in Lorain County.
“The Lorain County Crisis Receiving Center project has been the culmination of many years’ work and support from countless members of our community. They include civic leadership, healthcare, schools, law enforcement, courts, both state and federal legislators, philanthropic organizations and private business owners,” said Don Schiffbauer, Nord Center CEO. “Our local emergency rooms and law enforcement agencies are currently the treatment choice options for those in crisis. This center will provide a therapeutic, warm and welcoming setting in which to facilitate recovery by providing help through medication stabilization, access to case management, counseling services and appropriate assessment. Providers can also triage on-site for the right level of care, making seamless connections to community resources that will facilitate the recovery and healing process.”
The planned Crisis Receiving Center is an alternative and much improved vision for how Lorain County provides behavioral health and substance use disorder care. The project will enhance the crisis continuum in Lorain County with a first-of-its-kind facility to treat those experiencing a mental health or substance use disorder crisis. The project owner will be the Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services (MHARS) Board of Lorain County in partnership with The Nord Center, The LCADA Way and many other valuable community partners.
Currently, residents of Lorain County, experiencing a behavioral health crisis or substance use disorder emergency, primarily have two options: go to an emergency department at potentially great expense to the patient and to the community; or be taken to jail, which can overburden local law-enforcement agencies.
In the Crisis Receiving Center model, people can receive rapid counseling, medication stabilization and assessment with immediate access to an appropriate level of care in a setting that is warm, inviting and therapeutic to both clients and their families and friends.
In addition to significantly benefitting clients and their families, a Crisis Receiving Center also benefits the community by reducing crowding in emergency rooms and decreasing the use of law enforcement personnel for crisis management. This because, at a Crisis Receiving Center, law enforcement can drop a client off in a matter of minutes rather than potentially spending hours waiting with them at an emergency department.
“We thank you, Senator Brown, for this critically important investment in strengthening the crisis continuum in Lorain County,” said Michael Doud, Executive Director of the MHARS Board of Lorain County. “This funding will help bring this first-of-its-kind facility closer to opening its doors to anyone in our county experiencing a mental health or substance use disorder crisis.”Learn More
The Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services (MHARS) Board of Lorain County is supporting the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on October 23 across Lorain County. In April 2021, Lorain County Drug Take Back events resulted in the collection of 3,883.7 pounds of prescription drugs.
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., volunteers will provide free locking medication safes and other drug safety resources across the county at the locations noted below with an asterisk. At the locations listed without an asterisk, visitors can drop off their medications with law enforcement officers or other personnel for disposal. All are encouraged to clean out their medicine cabinets of potentially harmful drugs by safely disposing of them at this free, confidential annual event. The effort is led nationally by the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Locations in Lorain County include:
- Amherst Police Department* at 911 North Lake St. 44001
- Avon Lake Police Department at 32855 Walker Rd. 44012
- Avon Police Department at 36145 Detroit Rd. 44011
- Columbia Township Fire Department at 25540 Royalton Rd. 44028
- Elyria Police Department * 18 West Ave. 44035
- Grafton Police Department* at 1009 Chestnut St. 44044
- Kipton Police Department* at 299 State St. 44049
- LaGrange Police Department at 301 Liberty St. 44050
- Lorain County Sheriff’s Office* at 9896 Murray Ridge Rd. 44035
- Lorain Police Department * at 200 West Erie Ave. 44052
- North Ridgeville Department* at 7303 Avon-Belden Rd. 44039
- Oberlin Police Department at 85 South Main St. 44074
- Sheffield Lake Police Department * at 609 Harris Rd. 44054
- Sheffield Village Police Department at 4340 Colorado Ave. 44054
- Vermilion Police Department* at 5791 Liberty Ave. 44089
- Wellington Police Department* at 117 Willard Memorial Square 44090
The National Prescription Drug Take Back Day addresses a crucial public safety and public health issue. According to the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 9.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers, 4.9 million people misused prescription stimulants, and 5.9 million people misused prescription tranquilizers or sedatives in 2019. The survey also showed that a majority of misused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet.Learn More
New board of director members have been appointed to the Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services (MHARS) Board of Lorain County. Two members were appointed this week to the Board and one was reappointed earlier this month. More info about them and the appointing authority is below.
- Hope Moon (Lorain) – Moon was reappointed to serve on the MHARS Board of Lorain County in September 2021. She was appointed by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. Moon is currently a Professor of Nursing at Lorain County Community College, and is a resident of Lorain. As an educator, her focus is to appropriately educate the workforce on addiction and mental health issues. She served as a nurse in the emergency department of the former St. Joseph/Lorain Community Hospital. Moon earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Kent State University, a Master of Science from School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University, and ultimately, a Doctoral of Nursing Practice in Educational Leadership.
- Patricia Bell (Oberlin) – Bell was appointed by the Lorain County Commissioners to serve on the MHARS Board of Directors in September 2021. She was sworn in on September 28 at the board of directors scheduled meeting. Bell has nearly 20 years of experience working in the fields of mental health and addiction and is a registered nurse. She holds an associate degree from Lorain County Community College.
- Michele Flanagan (Avon Lake) – Flanagan was appointed by the Lorain County Commissioners to serve on the MHARS Board of Directors in September 2021. She was sworn in on September 28 at the board of directors scheduled meeting. She is a partner at the Westlake-based Comprehensive Behavioral Specialists LLC. She has more than 20 years’ experience as a therapist working throughout Northeast Ohio. Flanagan is a licensed social worker and professional clinical counselor. She earned her Bachelor of Arts from Westminster College in Pennsylvania and her Master of Arts from the University of Akron.
“Our new board members bring with them a wealth of experience and knowledge,” said Board President Dan Urbin. “I welcome them to the MHARS Board of Directors and look forward to working with them.”
Anyone interested in a board position should complete the application by clicking here. More information about requirements and about serving on the board is available by clicking here.Learn More
The Mental Health, Addiction & Recovery Services (MHARS) Board of Lorain County has issued a request for qualifications (RFQ) for a project manager/owner representative for the Lorain County Crisis Receiving Center. To view the full RFQ, click here.
Respondents interested in being considered may submit questions by 5 p.m. on Friday, October 8, 2021. On or before 5 p.m. on Friday, October 22, 2021, Respondent shall deliver by mail or in person any qualifications, along with all materials and other items supporting any proposals, to the MHARS Board offices at 1173 North Ridge Rd. E, Lorain, OH 44055. If submitting materials in person, they must be delivered during normal business hours, Monday-Friday between 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Proposals received after this deadline will not be considered.
All proposals are to be prepared at the submitter’s expense. The MHARS Board reserves the right to accept or reject any or all proposals, in whole or part, and accept any proposal which it deems favorable. The MHARS Board shall have no liability to any submitter whose proposal is not accepted. Acceptance of a proposal shall not constitute an Agreement between the submitter and the MHARS Board until a contract is negotiated between both parties.Learn More
We often miss, overlook or underestimate the impact of a person’s struggle with addiction and their intimate connection or lack thereof that the person has with their family. How the family responds, communicates, and intervenes can change the entire family system and have long-lasting effects from generation to generation. This National Recovery Month workshop will explore family dynamics in addiction recovery and revealed tools and supports to help the family reach recovery together.
Join us for this free virtual training on Sept. 27 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Register on Eventbrite by clicking here and the event info will be sent via email with confirmation.
- Examine intervention models that assist the family in changing their response to their loved one’s disease.
- Identify recovery supports for families and the importance of making sure the family gets the help they need.
- List the needs of the addicted family system and the family roles that develop due to those unmet needs.
- Formulate an individual advocacy strategy to assist families in recovery in Lorain County, Ohio.
How Addiction Affects the Family -53 minutes
- Defining addiction
- Case study of Sam’s family
- Codependence and what is really going on in the family
- Closer look at family roles
Trauma and Addiction- 7 minutes
- Fight -Flight Response: Survival Brain States
- Three Family Rules
- The Johnson Institute Model
- Love First Intervention
- The Community Reinforcement and Family (CRAFT) Training MODEL
Family Recovery Supports -30 minutes
- Support groups
- Family counseling
- Family education
- Peer Parent Coaching
- Recovery planning
Advocacy Strategies to Assist Families in Recovery -20 minutes
- Professionals support families
- Community support families
- Words Matter: Reducing Stigma
- Individual advocacy strategy
Questions & Evaluation
About the Presenter
Tonya Birney, MS, LPC, LICDC, OCPC, is the Dissemination and Implementation Director of Prevention Services for the Mental Health and Addiction Recovery Services Board of Lorain County. Birney earned her Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling from Walden University. She is a Licensed Independent Chemical Dependency Counselor, Ohio Certified Prevention Consultant, Licensed Professional Counselor and a trainer for multiple programs. In a previous role, she provided administrative oversite and supervision for behavioral health and public health, including alcohol and drug outpatient treatment, behavioral health prevention, and harm reduction services. Birney resides in Grafton, Ohio.Learn More
As part of a statewide show of gratitude to front-line workers who confront the opioid epidemic, the Mental Health, Addiction and Recovery Services (MHARS) Board is leading Lorain County’s efforts for the First Responders Week of Appreciation, September 20-26.
The National Institutes of Health called the opioid epidemic within the coronavirus pandemic a “collision of public health crises.”
The statewide team identifies children’s services workers, EMTs, emergency department staff, 9-1-1 dispatchers, law enforcement officers, firefighters, behavioral health workers, and “anyone else who may experience burnout or secondary trauma as a result of their work with individuals with addiction” during the Week of Appreciation.
The MHARS Board supports successful interactions between first responders and members of the community who are in distress by offering trainings on solving challenges related to mental illness and substance abuse. The MHARS Board also funds Quick Response Teams of a police officer and behavioral health clinician to visit overdose survivors with the goal of engaging individuals to seek treatment, and funds mobile response teams to support crisis calls throughout Lorain County. Local Week of Appreciation efforts are sponsored by the Ohio Association of County Behavioral Health Authorities and the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.
To learn more about how to help a loved one in active addiction or recovery, visit mharslc.org/recovery. The Addiction Helpline is available at 440-989-4900. To view photos, visit our Facebook page throughout the week at www.facebook.com/mharslc.Learn More