Two local agencies are providing a free online mini-series on mental health next month.
“There is a lack of mental health resources in the Bowie County and Northeast Texas region,” Shelley Caraway, executive director of Texas A&M University-Texarkana’s Office of Extended Education and Community Development, said. “So, we wanted to give people some tools they could work with.”
The mini-series is designed to help people recognize and help those who may be in the early stages of a mental health problem or are in a mental health crisis.
There are two remaining session in the three-part series.
10 a.m. Dec. 1 – Jennifer Sellers, LPC-S and owner of Texarkana Mental Health & Wellness on identifying mental health issues in high school and college-age youth.
10 a.m. Dec. 8 – Claire Rodriquez, Heritage Hospice, on mental health stressors in the senior population, geared toward family, friends and caregivers.
Conway is also co-president of the Texas A&M Bowie County AgriLife Leadership Advisory Board, the other agency helping to provide the free sessions. She said they wanted to focus on mental health as a project in late 2019. The plan was to conduct a mental health first-aid session, then the pandemic hit.
“We had to regroup,” she said. “As we got in the fall, we decided to do these one-hour sessions focusing on different age groups. We reached out to some practicing professionals in the area asking if they would lead a session. And they’ve graciously agreed to do so. So that’s how this was born.
“Our goal is to help people who interact with those age groups, give them signs and symptoms to look for and some strategies for how to address those signs and symptoms. Is it just ‘I’m having a blah day,’ or is this a pattern that we need to address?'”
The Mental Health Awareness mini-series is free and open to the public. Participants must register in advance at www.tamut.edu/eecd.
For more information on the event contact Emily Newsome at [email protected] or by phone at 903-223-3039.