The following piece is published in this month’s Put-in-Bay Gazette. The Gazette has been producing incredible independent Put-in-Bay island news for over 40 years. If you have any interest at all in what is happening on South Bass Island, we urge you strongly to subscribe to the Put-in-Bay Gazette. One-year online subscriptions are only $15, and print subscriptions are available as well. To subscribe please click here.
Forum for Emotional Health Support Resources
Winter can be bleak, isolating, and limit mobility. With COVID-19 still forecast to be around for months to come, anxiety, mental fatigue, depression, addiction and even suicide could be down the road. A community project in conjunction with the United Way of Ottawa County is underway to help alert islanders to important mental health and addiction counseling resources available in Ottawa County. We’re organizing a “Lunch and Learn Emotional Health Support Forum” community zoom meeting to be held Monday, November 23rd at 12 p.m. For those interested in coming to the online presentation in person, it will be held at Mother of Sorrows. Please wear a mask.
We’re focused on resources available to islanders without leaving the island that are confidential. Due to changes in Medicaid billing requirements scheduled appointments can now be done virtually by home phone, cell phone, or Zoom. These virtual emotional health services can provide immediate or very quick response times for those in need and these important services may be billed to your insurance, billed to Medicaid or billed on a prorated sliding scale based upon your income level.
If you’re feeling down or depressed and need to talk or reach out for help now, go no further and call the local crisis hotline at 1-800-826-1306 or you can text 4HOPE anonymously to 741741. If you are especially worried about yourself or a loved one call this Erie and Ottawa Counties’ Crisis hotline or if you, friend or a family member need to talk in person we suggest you contact the Put-in-Bay School guidance counselor, Put-in-Bay EMS, or even our police department. In Ohio, there is also the Ohio Care Line at 1-800-720-9616. This line is for those needing emotional support. They offer confidential support in times of personal or family crisis when individuals may be struggling to cope with challenges in their lives. Behavioral Health professionals staff the line 24 hours per day/7 days per week.
Meanwhile, we are looking for a few islanders that would be interested in taking QPR training. What’s QPR? QPR stands for “Question, Persuade, Refer” and is gatekeeper training for suicide prevention. It’s the CPR of mental health. The course costs $500 but the Mental Health and Recovery Board of Erie and Ottawa Counties will underwrite the cost. If you are interested please contact them directly at 419-627-1908.
Ultimately, we hope this Emotional Support Forum will lead us towards an on island resource and perhaps eventually a dedicated online private Tele-Med room that is available to our islanders. The “Lunch and Learn” community zoom meeting will be held November 23rd at 12 p.m.. For those interested in coming to the presentation in person, it will be held at Mother of Sorrows. Please wear a mask. For Zoom invites, they will be circulated via social media or just call 419-285-2832 and we will email it to you.
More CARES Act Funding Going Out to Island Communities
The Ohio General Assembly has passed and Gov. DeWine signed House Bill 614 to allocate an additional $650 million of federal CARES Act funding to help local communities deal with expenses associated with COVID-19.
The money is supposed to be used for pandemic-related expenses incurred by local governments between March 1st and the end of 2020. Unused dollars will be returned to the state. The dollars can be used for purposes such as work of first responders, local services, PPE, extra equipment, equipment for remote work or counties needing additional dollars for testing.
Allocated to the Lake Erie Islands were Kelleys Island Village – $11,207, Put-in-Bay Village – $5,081, and Put-in-Bay Twp. – $17,189.
This piece of Put-in-Bay journalism has been provided to islandclub.com courtesy of the Put-in-Bay Gazette, Put-in-Bay’s only local newspaper. Visit their website putinbay.news for more information and to subscribe!