RAVENSWOOD - “We’re here to identify those people who need our help,” explained Vicky Burrow, CFT, MI Residential Supervisor, at last week’s open house for the new Westbrook Health Services office at 409 Professional Circle in Ravenswood. “We’ re here to help people become independent and have the stability to be productive and live in the community. There is a whole generation of adults who have counted on parents for practically everything and those parents are now elderly and becoming unable to care for them.”

Westbrook will operate Monday through Friday, from 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. daily, addressing adult mental health and addiction issues.

“We also work with HUD in a transitional program for the homeless, working toward permanent housing,” said Burrow. “That’s something that’s close to my heart.”

Group counseling includes menu planning, grocery shopping, meal preparation, personal hygiene, oral hygiene and money management.

Community engagement activities include trips to the grocery store, bank, library, mall shopping, restaurants and other activities including group trips to places like Cass Railroad, Blennerhassett, Marietta Aquatic Center, Clay Center, Cabela’s, Oglebay Park, Moundsville Historic Prison and more.

Issues like anger management, eating disorders, overcoming obstacles, mood disorders, drug and alcohol use, adult bullying, interpersonal relationships, domestic violence and constructive criticism are addressed.

Coping with problems and persistent symptoms, coping with anger and depression, managing and reducing stress, recognizing triggers for symptoms, managing severe symptoms to avoid crisis, coping tactics for anxiety, strategies to deal with fear, practical facts about mental illness and suicide prevention are strengthened.

Improving social skills include gaining personal insight and self-awareness, breaking the stigma of mental illness, building self-esteem and self-confidence and making friends and building social support system.

Improving communication skills include improving conversation skills, active listening, job readiness, resume building, GED preparation, basic computer skills, adult literacy and oral comprehension.

The goal is to empower each client to manage their illness to lead more productive and independent lives.

Other services offered by Westbrook include psychiatric services (evaluations and medication management), therapy services (adult mental health and child and family—parenting groups begin May 6 in cooperation with WV Works), substance abuse services, DUI classes and more.