Dial Help offers many mental health programs and services | News, Sports, Jobs

Virginia Lambert, left, and Paige Setter-Hallwachs, of Dial Help Victim Services, discussed the mental health services and programs offered by Dial Help during the May 11 mental health presentation in Houghton. (Graham Jaehnig/Daily Mining Gazette)

HOUGHTON – Dial Help is a non-profit crisis center serving the Upper Peninsula, located in Houghton, that offers a wide range of services to residents in need. Some of the programs it offers include youth services, victim services, peer coaching for substance use disorder recovery, school-based prevention, home family support, and education and training programs. It also offers crisis counseling and training in suicide prevention techniques.

Dial Help was established in 1971 by a group of citizens concerned about drug addiction. From that original group of volunteers who manned the crisis line, it has grown into a non-profit organization of over 50 staff and volunteers offering a variety of services. Dial Help’s mission is to promote the physical, emotional and social well-being of its communities. It achieves this goal by providing problem assistance, crisis intervention, referrals, education and training.

Virginia Lambert, MS, of Dial Help Victim Services, said the crisis line is what people most associate with Dial Help. The line, she said, extended to the entire Upper Peninsula in 1976. Lambert spoke at a public program on mental health services and challenges in the community, which was held May 11 at the Portage Lake District Library. Representatives from three agencies and one organization provided information on resources available to those seeking help or information about mental illness and treatment.

“We have round-the-clock access to trained crisis specialists,” Lambert during a public presentation at the Houghton Library last week. In addition to calling, she added, people can now text and instant message through the website (https://dialhelp.org/).

“We are able to reach a wider group of people because as you know a lot of our kids don’t want to pick up the phone and call us, they would rather text you,” she says. “So we’re trying to keep up and connect with people who want to ask for help.”

Lambert said Dial Help also runs a safety net program that offers follow-up support via phone call or text message to people facing suicide risk or complex loss, addiction or crisis.

Monitoring includes:

– Emotional support

– Ongoing assessment of mood and potential risk of suicide or relapse

– Assistance with security planning

– Connection to resources to overcome obstacles.

“The program offers aftercare support for people who are having issues – maybe suicidal ideation, complex trauma – maybe you’ve lost someone to suicide and just want someone to follow you. “

Sometimes it’s hard to make appointments with counsellors, she says, adding, “In the meantime, you can have someone from our agency contact you, kind of check in, plan a safety plan with you, find you any resources you may need, while you wait for your next appointment. of advice.”

The Safety Net program is available throughout UP, according to Lambert.

Additionally, there is the National Suicide Crisis Line to which Dial Help responds.

“We hear things from all over the country,” said Lambert, “and it’s really amazing and exciting to see people reaching out when they need help – like, the stigma can stop now.”

Dial Help runs its Youth One-Stop program, which is group mental health counseling therapy, family support and other clinical support for youth in crisis, Lambert said.

The website indicates that the program offers specialized services for risks related to mental health, addictions or other problems; includes crisis intervention, referral, follow-up, family support and counselling.

Lambert said Dial Help has people at many area schools who are there for specific purposes. They can receive support for children in crisis or who may be on the verge of crisis.

Lambert said the program is operating in at least five area schools and continues to grow.

“The more people who hear about this program, the more benefits they get from it,”she says, “The more schools that sign up and let us in, and allow us to help young people.”

Dial Help also performs suicide assessments in emergency rooms through UP Health Systems.

Another important community program offered by Dial Help is its support for victims of crime. These include sexual assault, child abuse, as well as other crimes including elder abuse and domestic violence.

The crime victim support program will be reviewed in Wednesday’s edition of the Daily Mining Gazette.

For more information about Dial Help and its services, visit its website at https://dialhelp.org/ or

Business Line: 906-482-9077

Fax: 906-482-2502

General email: [email protected] (This email is not permanently monitored, use the crisis contacts above for crisis services)

Crisis contacts:

– Crisis call: 800-562-7622 or 906-482-HELP

– Crisis Text: 35NEEDS (906-356-3337)

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second in a series that will explore services available for mental health-related issues, including assessments, insurance and programs available in the four county area.

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