Saving Our Streets: Part 3- Treating Mental Illness at a Young Age

Mental Illness and developmental disabilities are starting to be detected in children as early as two years old. The most common childhood mental disorders are anxiety disorders, depression, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). There are many treatment options available for children that are affected but extensive assessments have to be done to see what is most effective for the child, such as medications, educational interventions, and psychotherapy. Children with mental-health problems can have lower educational achievement, greater involvement with the criminal justice system, and fewer stable placements in the child welfare system.  Due to mental illness being frowned upon in black communities, many parents do not take them to get tested, so either most people are checked by a school doctor, or there’s a major issue when the child gets older.

Many colleges are becoming proactive with addressing and treating mental illness. Depression and anxiety is on the rise in many college campuses around the world. According to the U.C.L.A Higher Education Research Institute Annual Freshman Survery, a record high of 11.9 percent of the students in the 2016 incoming class reported “frequently” feeling depressed in the past year, and 13.9 percent said “there was a very good chance they would seek personal counseling in college.” And for the first time in the survey’s history, less than half (47 percent) consider their mental health to be above average relative to their peers. “I was first tested in college, I had been feeling funny and needing to know why and what was going on with me, especially because it was causing me to start sleeping a lot,” said Bruce Garcia.

Bruce was tested in college but did not follow through with his medications. After his third year he dropped out and turned to a life of drugs. “I am in treatment now, and I go to my group meetings. I have been trying to stay focused but what I do realize is I am a lot better around people that I feel are more like myself. It’s not easy being a recovering drug addict and I feel that I should probably be dead, but group has really been helping me,” said Garcia.

Community outreach programs in Detroit have been working hard and working together to keep mental illness and drug abuse down in the city.  Detroit Recovery Project and The Detroit Rescue Mission are two leading community programs for assistance in the city of Detroit and the metro area. Support is community based, and a lot of these non-profit programs need help from community volunteers. Mental illness can be controlled with the proper treatment and the proper support.

Mental Illness and developmental disabilities are starting to be detected in children as early as two years old. The most common childhood mental disorders are anxiety disorders, depression, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). There are many treatment options available for children that are affected but extensive assessments have to be done to see what is most effective for the child, such as medications, educational interventions, and psychotherapy. Children with mental-health problems can have lower educational achievement, greater involvement with the criminal justice system, and fewer stable placements in the child welfare system.  Due to mental illness being frowned upon in black communities, many parents do not take them to get tested, so either most people are checked by a school doctor, or there’s a major issue when the child gets older.

Many colleges are becoming proactive with addressing and treating mental illness. Depression and anxiety is on the rise in many college campuses around the world. According to the U.C.L.A Higher Education Research Institute Annual Freshman Survery, a record high of 11.9 percent of the students in the 2016 incoming class reported “frequently” feeling depressed in the past year, and 13.9 percent said “there was a very good chance they would seek personal counseling in college.” And for the first time in the survey’s history, less than half (47 percent) consider their mental health to be above average relative to their peers. “I was first tested in college, I had been feeling funny and needing to know why and what was going on with me, especially because it was causing me to start sleeping a lot,” said Bruce Garcia.

Bruce was tested in college but did not follow through with his medications. After his third year he dropped out and turned to a life of drugs. “I am in treatment now, and I go to my group meetings. I have been trying to stay focused but what I do realize is I am a lot better around people that I feel are more like myself. It’s not easy being a recovering drug addict and I feel that I should probably be dead, but group has really been helping me,” said Garcia.

Community outreach programs in Detroit have been working hard and working together to keep mental illness and drug abuse down in the city.  Detroit Recovery Project and The Detroit Rescue Mission are two leading community programs for assistance in the city of Detroit and the metro area. Support is community based, and a lot of these non-profit programs need help from community volunteers. Mental illness can be controlled with the proper treatment and the proper support.

Saving our Streets Part 2

Drug Abuse is an issue that have been taking over many urban cities in the United States of America since the early 70s and have been an issue since. Mental Illness have been named as one of the major causes of drug abuse. In the past people were just being treated for drugs and not for the underlying problem that caused the abuse. Now and days there are many programs that work with individuals to treat both the mental illness and the drug abuse such at the Behavioral Center of Michigan located in Warren, MI, where the treatment works hand-in-hand.

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Photo of the main office for Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries

The Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries along with many other organizations in the city of Detroit work together to keep people safe and off drugs. There are many different programs offered and half-way houses that are setup so that people can be successful before, during, and after their program. Many of these non-profit organizations cater to the person’s individual needs, understanding that everyone is different, treatment is catered to the individual person’s needs. DRMM has several locations across the city of Detroit that are set up to assist people and their needs. They have Genius House 1-3 and the Christian Guidance Center for men and women, these are places where they can go for treatment, have meetings and also have a safe place to sleep. According to the Facebook page for DRMM, in 2016 963 men and women received mental health and substance abuse treatment.

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Photo of Vernon Bryan Standing outside DRMM Christian Guidance Center

Vernon Bryan is a resident of Detroit that has been in the treatment program and is a witness that it works. “It used to be hard for me to talk about my life but now it is something that helps the lives of other young men. When I was on the street, I never thought that programs like this worked because so many people that I ran with tried before. One day I knew that I could not live like that anymore, that I had a family and needed to be a better man for them. I called the number, they sent me to CDC (Christian Guidance Center) and I went through the program. From there I stayed in another home that I am now employed through an able to help other people like me. It’s like a second chance at life,” says Bryan.

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Photo of Vernon Bryan standing outside the residential facility for men where he works

Drug and alcohol abuse have been on the rise in Michigan and about the national average, since 2003. With many efforts in many different cities to keep the streets clean, it seems that each year it there are new drugs being introduced, or something easier to access. It’s not just up to law enforcement, but also the community. Community outreach programs are designed to help, but they are non-profit and many of them depend on donations or partnerships. “We partner with hundreds of churches, para-churches and for-profit corporations who send us volunteer groups. Because of that we have over 300 men and women graduating from various life-changing programs next month, this is what we are here for,” says Rev. C. Paschal, director of Spiritual Life and Public Relations for DRMM.