Community Resource Programs
From helping someone learn more about their illness in an effort to better understand and manage it, to learning how to effectively and confidently use public transportation, staff in Southwestern’s Community Resource Program’s (CSP) are actively engaged in helping individuals regain a sense of self and self worth.
The debilitating effects of having a severe and persistent mental illness are significant and comprehensive, even when positive symptoms are well managed. Many everyday tasks most of us take for granted are overwhelming or seem insurmountable. And, caring for one’s own spiritual, recreational, social, and leisure needs is often not even an after thought.
Through focused Skills Training, CSP staff strives to work with individuals to rebuild their lives one step at a time. The focus is to assist them in accumulating small victories in an effort to achieve a larger objective or goal.
When needed, Case Management Services are also available to provide ongoing assessment and treatment planning, linkage and referral, and advocacy.
Goals of the program include promoting recovery, prevention of homelessness and unnecessary hospitalizations, decreasing contacts with legal system and assisting in transitioning from supportive residential services to independent living.
Basic principles of the ACT program include:
- A team approach with shared caseload
- Low patient–staff ratio
- Intensive yet flexible level of service
- Community based locus of contact
- Accessibility of services with no time limit
The team can serve up to 50 individuals. Criteria include individuals who are at least 18 years of age, typically with a diagnosis of schizophrenia or bi-polar disorder, with significant functional impairment. Individuals referred to the ACT team may be coming out of a state operated facility, group home, the criminal justice system or have recent multiple acute hospitalizations. The ACT Team has capacity to see individuals daily, including weekends, for medication supervision and monitoring. Although the team typically has primary clinical responsibility for patients, it can be used as a temporary ancillary service, primarily to encourage and supervise medication adherence.
The current team is comprised of a team coordinator and four community resource specialists, as well as a part time nurse and psychiatrist.
The team agrees that building a relationship and establishing trust between the homeless individual and themselves is the first step towards getting help. Three Friday’s a month, they team up with Aurora to meet the folks where they are and help to distribute items such as blankets, socks, toothpaste, soap, and anything else the team may have on that Friday. The rest of the week they are checking into the shelters and other agencies looking for those they can assist.
The face of homelessness has changed over the years, especially over the last couple of years. They are seeing more middle-aged women being homeless for the first time and not knowing where to go or how to get help. That’s where the Homeless Outreach Team comes to the rescue.
The Homeless Outreach Team works with a rather large number of agencies including – but not limited to:
- Potter’s Wheel
- St. Anthony’s
- Evansville Rescue Mission
- United Caring Shelter
- House of Bread and Peace
- Albion Fellows Bacon Center
- Evansville Christian Life Center
- ECHO Housing
- Goodwill Family Center
- Indiana Legal Services
- Salvation Army
- Pigeon Township Trustee
- Purdue Extension
With everyone working together, help can be obtained.
The general scope of medication services provided includes:
- Storage of medications either at Genoa, our on-site pharmacy, or within residential program facilities
- Prescribing of medications by medical staff
- Dispensing of medications by Genoa or a community pharmacy
- Monitoring of clients as they self-administer their medications
- Administration of injectable medications by medical staff
There are currently three group homes in the Evansville area. Each home has a capacity for 10 residents and is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The homes are less restrictive than inpatient programs in hospital settings but provide more structure and supervision than living independently in the community.
The SGL program is voluntary, and residents who agree to admission into the program are expected to be fully involved in planning their treatment. Residents must be willing to participate in both group and individual skill building modules to facilitate their recovery.
The residents in each home are assessed for functioning daily and are grouped so that programming is relevant to all residents in the home. For example, a resident who is currently working or going to school will not be participating in the same type of programming as a resident who is constantly battling auditory hallucinations and needs to focus on symptom management.
It is important to note that the group homes are not medical facilities, therefore residents must be able to manage their physical health problems without staff assistance. Residents whose medical needs become more prominent than their psychiatric needs will be assisted with finding more appropriate housing options.