The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on February 2, 1986 · Page 70
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 70

Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Sunday, February 2, 1986
Page 70
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The Salina Journal Sunday, February 2,1986 PageS34 Mental Health Center shares social agency budget woes OCCK ta P s resources in By SHERIDA WARNER 'Living Today' Editor Because 40 percent of the Central Kansas Mental Health Center's clients are low-income, the center is feeling the pinch of recent reductions in welfare payments. As of Jan. 1, the Department of x* 1 Social and Rehabilitation Services imposed a 9% percent decrease in fees paid for • mental health outpatient services. Dreese Dr. William Dreese, administrative director of the center, said a 22 percent reduction in partial hospitalization fees goes into effect March 1. The financial loss is the equivalent of one staff position, but Dreese said he hopes to find other ways to supplement the budget. "We can't tell yet about cutbacks in staff or programs.'' Funding for the center comes from a property tax levy (21.6 percent), client fees and medical cards and state aid. It received some grant money last year, but that probably will not be available in 1986, Dreese said. Regardless of its current money worries, the facility at 809 Elmhurst last year was able to expand its services and staff. In fact, the mental health center took a giant stride in 1985 in helping former mental patients merge with society. A pilot program, called the Crossroads Club, teaches social and pre-job skills to 55 mentally restored clients each week. Pat McKee, public information coordinator at the center, said little has been done to reintegrate such persons into the community in the 20 years since a nationwide movement to release them from institutions was started. Crossroads is an effort to correct that. Last September, the mental health center opened a new 3,000-square- foot addition to house the program. Inside are a large activity-dining room, kitchen, clerical office- receptionist desk and staff offices. Crossroads classes are in session there Tuesday through Thursday in Hotline fielded 200 calls per month during 1985 Volunteers for Hotline — Crisis, Information and Referral answered 200 telephone calls per month last year. Pat Ackley, program administrator, said callers needed emotional, mental or physical assistance. The former Crisis Hotline merged last April with First Call for Help to form a new agency, thus offering better service with 24-hour telephone an- Ackley swering and by eliminating confusion between the two agencies. Hotline now offers information and referrals, as well as crisis intervention and suicide prevention. Funding is a problem for Hotline, as it is for other human service agencies because of federal budget cuts. Nevertheless, goals for 1986 include a latchkey phone-in and an elderly wellness answering service. With the number of mothers in the workforce and single parent households, many children are home alone between the hours of 3:30 and 5:30 p.m. and perhaps all day during summer vacation, said Ackley. A latchkey service could aid in the prevention of such problems as juvenile firesetting, drug and alcohol abuse and adolescent suicide. Elderly wellness would involve routine telephone monitoring of shut- ins. If a problem is detected by phone, assistance could be sent from another local agency. A grant for the elderly program is a possibility, Ackley said, but no state money or Salina School District funds are available for the latchkey program. Inception of the latchkey program is dependent on the community, she said, perhaps through a corporate fund from employers who have women on their payrolls. Another Hotline goal for 1986 is to become a community clearinghouse for emergency assistance. Computerization would be a boon to the agency, and Ackley said she is applying for a grant from Apple Computer Corp. Hotline now receives funds from (See Hotline, Page S35) DVACK shelter house has been used by many Since the Domestic Violence Association of Central Kansas opened a 30-day shelter house in central Salina last May, 52 battered women and 72 children have sought refuge there. Acquiring the house was a major triumph for DVACK, which previously had relied on a network of volunteers who opened their homes to such families several times a year for an average of three days. Purchase of the $47,500 house was made possible through increased United Way funding and a $21,000 block grant from the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services. The grant was the first of its kind to be awarded by SRS to a domestic / <7 A violence associ- i.». > ation in Kansas, ••<—r • said Joan Wilson, DVACK executive director. Wilson Furnishings and other household items were donated by various community organizations and individuals. In addition to the shelter house, the association, with offices at 227 N. Santa Fe, provides crisis counseling and advocacy for victims of domestic violence, rape and sexual abuse. All of its services are free. In 1985, the number of DVACK clients increased by 16 percent. The association serves a 15-county area. Wilson said she is constantly searching for ways to finance DVACK programs. When United Way failed to reach its goal for 1985, agency allocations were cut 5 percent. She estimates DVACK's loss at $4,000. Rejecting a cutback in services, Wilson turned to other financial sources. She said she expects verification soon of a federal grant from the Crime Victims Assistance Fund. This three-year program through the United States Department of Justice is targeted for direct service to victims of domestic violence, rape and child abuse. Other financial assistance may come from a crime victims' grant in conjunction with the Saline County Sheriff's Department, the United States Department of Health and Human Services and the Kansas Crime Victims Reparations Board. Local sources of funding are the Salina Alcohol Tax Fund, corporate, church and civic donations and association memberships. Wilson said DVACK may try its hand this year with a food booth at the Smoky Hill River Festival. Besides opening the shelter house in 1985, DVACK expanded its services through several support groups. A new group for rape victims was organized, as well as a second group for battered women. DVACK also supervised a Kids in Crisis Support group for teen-age girls who are victims of sexual abuse or assault. It is a 10-week structured program which helped 18 victims in 1985. A new session is to begin this month, Wilson said. Health/Social Services food service, clerical work, maintenance and transportation. The program is patterned after the Fountain House in New York City. It has been partially funded by federal and state grants, said McKee. In January, the center received a Kansas Department of Transportation grant for a 15-passenger van to provide transportation for its Crossroads members. Participants range in age from 18 to 70. After 10 to 20 years of hospitalization for some, they now live independently or in group homes. Crossroads, with a five-member staff, actually is a partial hospitalization program with continuing individual and group therapy sessions. Clients pay an amount on a sliding scale based on income and with help fromSRS. The program goal is to make the former patients more self-sufficient at whatever their level, either as KVRC expects no reduction in its services Budget restrictions are a reality at the Kansas Vocational Rehabilitation Center, 3140 Centennial Road, as they are at other human service agencies in the community. But KVRC Ad| ministrator Harry Shimp said he , foresees no finan- h cial problems in T | fiscal year 1986, as 4 funds already have been allo- I cated for current programs. "At this particular juncture, there is to be no substantial reduction in our services," he said. However, the rehabilitation center functions under its umbrella agency, the Kansas Social and Rehabilitation Services, which is facing substantial cutbacks because of new federal deficit-slashing legislation. Consequently, KVRC likely will feel the repercussions through increased stringencies in its operational costs. The center's role is to help handicapped people assess and develop their employment potential. It focuses on helping them live as independently as possible. Shimp said two new KVRC programs were instituted in 1985. One, called Schoolwork Transition, is designed for teen-age special education students in Salina schools, as well as those in other state school systems. The young people come to the Salina center for extensive vocational evaluations and recommendations for future training. A successful summer program, it is to be repeated this year, Shimp said. KVRC also started a pilot project in the Kansas State School for the Deaf in Olathe. A KVRC vocational evaluator/counselor works at the school, testing the students and advising them on their individual education plans. Cottonwood is state tree The official state tree is the cottonwood. It was designated in 1935 by the legislature. >r^" Shimp working members in the community or as participating members of such a group as the Crossroads Club. Counties served are Dickinson, Ellsworth, Lincoln, Ottawa and Saline. Dreese said the impact of SRS cutbacks will be felt gradually in all types of long-term treatment programs, especially for patients with severe mental illness. "Ultimately, these people will be treated less, and many of them will be back in hospitals." Economically, Dreese said, this makes little sense as hospitalization costs are much higher than outpatient services. "One way or another, services have to be provided.'' ' It may mean an increase in cost in other areas, such as taxes, Dreese said plans for expansion in the Crossroads Club are "somewhat on hold" because of funding problems. His goal is for more energetic pre-vocational training and job placement for clients, but the center can't afford the necessary staff to facilitate this. In addition to the beginning of Crossroads in 1985, Dreese reported advancements in treatment programs for sexually abused children and their families. These programs are tied in with the county attorney diversion programs in which defendants in child abuse cases may get charges against them dismissed if they complete the required treatment. Other services addressed the fact families often don't report incest and, therefore, children must be targeted. For instance, Dreese said, the center presented a film on "Good Touch, Bad Touch" to 1,500 grade school children in Abilene. Plans are to continue both the counseling and educational services in 1986. Dreese said he would like to see further development in the sexual abuse programs, particularly more involvement with teen-agers and their depressive problems. One of his (See Mental, Page 835) Glen Rhea stands outside CKF's new offices. Cnlfl< CKF planned ahead for day of funding cutbacks The Central Kansas Foundation for Alcohol and Chemical Dependency offers support and counseling to nearly 2,000 drug-dependent individuals and families each year. Three years ago, 55 percent of CKF's annual budget came from revenue sharing, grants and United Way. Today, that percentage has dropped to 30, said Glen Rhea, the foundation's executive director. Still, he said he feels comfortable with CKF's 1986 budget. During the past three years, Rhea has made revisions and cuts in anticipation of tight funds. One counselor's position and two secretarial jobs were eliminated, and another counselor's position was reduced to part-time. Rhea said he consolidated the kitchen duties at CKF's three halfway houses; one full-time cook now serves all of them rather than three part-time cooks. Despite Rhea's belt-tightening efforts, the reduction in available government funds affects CKF. The difference is passed on to clients in (See CKF, Page S35) the community Short funds and long waiting lists play serious tug-of-war this year at the Occupational Center of Central Kansas, located at 370 Schilling Road. The facility serves mentally retarded and physically disabled residents of a nine-county area. Resources within the community are one answer to the center's dilemma, said Phyllis Anderson, administrative services coordinator. An example is Anderson OCCK's new Integrated Employment Training program which began last September. Clients are responsible for dishwashing duties and dining room cleaning at Kenwood View Nursing Home in Salina. An OCCK staff person supervises their work, but the clients are paid employees of Kenwood View. OCCK also maintains four work crews, called Quality Custodial Systems, that clean local businesses such as the Sears, Roebuck store, American Fire Equipment Co. and Gibson's Discount Center. The service increased its workload by 100 percent in 1985; this year's goal is to add two more crews. Similar community arrangements that alleviate the financial burden for OCCK are "the big focus for 1986," said Anderson. Another new development last year was the Independent Connection program. Since then, 821 clients have used the new service. Needs include advocacy, attendant care, dealing with limited capabilities after a head injury, budgeting and other short-term training and an interpreter for the hearing impaired. This is the fourth year OCCK has received a contract for Smoky Hill River Festival buttons. These are made on hydraulic presses at an OCCK plant in Beloit. Clients made 86,000 promotional buttons in 1985; the goal for 1986 is 150,000. In addition to vocational and independent living programs, OCCK now is remodeling its woodworking area at the Salina facility to provide more areas for one-on-one training. OCCK serves the counties of Cloud, Dickinson, Ellsworth, Jewell, Lincoln, Mitchell, Ottawa, Republic and Saline. The Alternative to Kansas City International Airport Depart Salina 4:30 am 6:45 am 9:00 am 12:00 pm 3:00 pm Arrive K.C.I. 8:10 am 10:25 am 12:40 pm 3:40 pm 7:40 pm Frequency Daily Ex. Sun. Daily Daily Daily Daily ONLY $ 35°° one way Daily Service To Kansas City International For more Information call your Local Travel Agent. Or KC Connection: Local No. 825-6000 • In state (800) 232-0092 • Nationwide (800) 826-765? QUALITY-THE KEY TO PROGRESS ^: ••/ y' ^ r .'. y-t&fi.i.*; v Quality Products Made By Quality Employees PIZZA SERVICE 3019 Scanlan Salina, Kansas

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