Help is Closer Than You Think

Help is Closer Than You Think

June 1, 2017

Written by: Guest contributor, Lisa Shaffer

Lisa Shaffer and her husband, Steve Bartram, are long-time CRC supporters. Lisa served on the Encinitas City Council from 2012-2016.

Adults, seniors, children, families, couples – anyone struggling with anxiety, depression, loss, relationship issues, trauma, or other life challenges – can find help from the Community Resource Center’s counseling services. The counseling staff at CRC are compassionate professionals, some bilingual (Spanish), with credentials in marriage and family therapy, art therapy, and clinical counseling. They understand that everyone wants to feel heard and seen, especially when going through a major life transition. And they are passionate about their work – they love what they do, and value the lessons they learn from their clients as they provide vital services to those in need.

I recently met with Vickie, Tami, Harsha, Azucena, and Raquel (Petrea was not there but is also part of the team) in the CRC offices on Second Street in downtown Encinitas. My assumption, that they focus mainly on clients and families affected by domestic violence, was wrong. In fact, they provide a wide range of counseling services to a wide range of clients, including, but not predominantly from the Domestic Violence prevention and intervention program.

Experience shows that early intervention can make a huge difference, no matter what the source of the crisis. When someone who has experienced a loss or trauma has a chance to talk about their situation and realize that they are not alone, that their jumble of feelings and emotional confusion are normal, it can be a huge relief. Instead of withdrawing and suppressing their feelings, they can begin to understand and to heal. In group sessions, they can hear the stories of others going through similar experiences. For both adults and children, art therapy encourages expression of sometimes indescribable issues, through active participation in art making, with a variety of materials.

So let’s get educated.

Who is eligible for counseling through CRC? Anyone who needs help, with those needing a higher level of psychiatric care referred elsewhere.

How much does it cost to see a counselor? To cover its costs, CRC offers a sliding scale ranging from $30.00 and up based on individual/family income. CRC also offers free classes in parenting, domestic violence prevention, and other topics. Clients come from social service referrals, recommendations from other clients, as well as people being served in other CRC programs.

Even with the reduced fees offered by CRC, some clients struggle to pay for counseling services. Community members and businesses can help by sponsoring counseling sessions for those in need. When an individual or a family is in real crisis, we don’t want money to stand in the way of vital assistance and possibly life-saving intervention. To sponsor services for an individual or family in need, click here.

Community members can also help by spreading awareness that affordable high quality care is available locally, which makes it both cost and time-efficient. So tell your family members, friends, and associates. Include CRC as an option if your business offers referrals for counseling services.

To get more information or schedule an initial consultation, visit this link or call (760) 230-6314. To reach CRC’s domestic violence hotline, call (877) 633-1112.

It’s hard to capture the strong sense of passion and commitment I felt in talking to these talented and devoted professionals. They each mentioned how much they love their work, and how gratifying it is to be able to serve through this organization. I have no doubt that they work hard and bring their devotion and expertise to their work. And I have no doubt that they have made a huge difference in many lives. How fortunate we are to have CRC and its counseling staff in our community.

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