Jefferson Co. awards $4M in ARPA funds to mental health, substance use organizations

Published: Mar. 24, 2023 at 2:53 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Jefferson County has received $127 million in American Rescue Plan Act funding. Now, $4 million of it is going towards helping the mental health and substance use issues made worse by the pandemic.

“The organizations here, they already provide great services to the public. But the capacity of these organizations has really been tested by the pandemic,” said Assistant to the County Manager, Justin Smith.

The county has seen an increase in opioid-related deaths throughout the pandemic. In 2022, the coroner’s office reported 374 opioid-related deaths. That is up from the 343 in 2021.

The organizations that were awarded include:

  • Aletheia House - substance use ($172,500)
  • Cahaba Medical Care Foundation - substance use ($250,000)
  • Changed Lives Christian Center - substance use ($50,000)
  • Cooperative Downtown Ministries - substance use ($278,764)
  • Cooperative Downtown Ministries - mental health ($255,300)
  • Crisis Center - mental health ($258,739.98)
  • Glenwood - mental health ($420,000)
  • IMPACT Family Counseling - mental health ($265,000)
  • Jimmie Hale Mission - substance use ($740,639.80)
  • One Place - mental health ($50,235)
  • Priority Soldier - mental health ($214,963.50)
  • The Foundry Ministries, Inc. - substance use ($140,881)
  • UAB TASC/Beacon Recovery - substance use ($367,213)
  • YWCA - mental health ($105,430)

“This funding will hopefully allow people who have been impacted by substance use disorder by mental health disorders, to receive the treatment or counseling that they need. Whether it’s an intervention based on the justice system or just needing someone to talk to. Hopefully, it’ll allow them to have that and have that available that might have not been before,” said Smith.

Jimmie Hale Mission will use its grant to help with its Active Recovery Program. The $740,000 grant is the largest grant the organization has received in its history.

Director of Development, Tracey Guidry, said roughly 90 percent of the people they serve come to the mission with some kind of substance abuse or addiction issue.

The 15-week program is offered for free and gets to the core issue of the person’s addiction.

“They focus 100 percent on that root cause planning a life map, re-establishing core values. We work with their faith and their spirituality. So we just work with the holistic person,” said Guidry.

The money will be used to hire 33 full and part-time positions to serve as counselors and resident assistants.

“It was overwhelming. And all I could think about was all the people were going to be able to serve,” said Guidry.

To read more about the ARPA funding, click here.

Get news alerts in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store or subscribe to our email newsletter here.