Katie’s Way… Click on the highlighted text, and take a moment to see the powerfully moving video clip…
We live in the rural community of Depoe Bay, Oregon in Lincoln County on the Central Oregon Coast. We are blessed to live out our dreams in this beautiful and stunning coastal community. We have big challenges just like many rural towns, including the lack of resources to help those who are mentally challenged, especially kids. The stigma of mental health hits us hard just like everywhere else in America. Most hesitate or even avoid telling parents and loved ones about feelings of severe depression and anxiety for fear it will not lead to a helpful outcome, or even worse, could keep them from achieving dreams of college, career, and building loving relationships. We are devastated and traumatized whenever there is word of a death, suicide or accident connected with the need for vastly improved mental health treatment and healing resources.
One of the most recent tragedies in our community is the story of little London McCabe, who’s mother tossed him over the Yaquina Bridge in Newport, Oregon because she was hearing voices. Other examples we can’t mention names in order to protect victims, include child abuse, sexual abuse and maltreatment. My own life experience includes a severely toxic and sometimes violent home culture while growing up in the 1950’s and early 1960’s before leaving to join the US Navy in 1963… “I got away!”
The State of Oregon acknowledges the need to improve mental health support and treatment resources by making it a legislative priority. Our local Depoe Bay, Oregon City Council formally put mental health on its agenda. We participate in the local community governing process by sitting on both the Local Public Safety Coordinating Council (LPSCC) and the Mental Health Advisory Committee (MHAC). We are making room in our new Samaritan Pacific Communities Hospital expansion to include space and beds for a detox treatment center. Where we have a sticky problem is trying to build resources within our smaller communities similar to Katie’s Way, where getting help comes from a safe and secure setting managed by non institutional professionals and volunteers.
Katie’s Way is a non-profit public private partnership business model we need to get serious about right now! There have been attempts in the past that have either failed or struggled to achieve sustainability. We have the compassion, passion, and talent in Lincoln County to make it happen, we just need to go the extra mile. I hope the story of Katie’s Way will give us the extra energy and commitment to move forward more quickly.
Steve Sparks, Author, Reconciliation: A Son’s Story and My Journey of Healing in Life After Trauma, Part 1… Click the highlighted text for my author page.
https://www.facebook.com/councilorsparks Please “like” my page…