Aspen Hope Center
In 2009 a Rural Colorado Needs Assessment for Mental Health was completed by Colorado University’s Depression Institute. The major gaps that identified were: access to mental health care, minimal follow up after crises and a narrow scope of treatment services and education being provided. The Hope Center was created in 2010 in an effort to address the unmet needs of people in the Roaring Fork Valley. To fill the identified gaps in a rural area of the state, several steps were taken. A 24/7 crisis line was initiated and answered by a local crisis team, the team was designed to be mobile and meet with the person where they were. Lastly, and with the most impact, the Individual Intensive Outpatient Program (I-IOP) was designed. With the Roaring Fork Valley sitting more than two or three hours from the closest psychiatric hospital, creating a tight knot system of care in the community was vital.
Since June of 2010, the Hope Center’s aim has remained solid. The resources available in an urban area are much greater in number than in a small valley. Doctors, therapists, education programs and day treatment is abundant, in the Roaring Fork Valley – limitations are constantly being identified and creative solutions found.
The Aspen Hope Center has the following goals:
1. To be available 24/7 to those in need regardless of their location in the valley and have the ability to meet face to face rather than over the phone.
2. For individuals in rural areas of the valley to have the same opportunities for preventative education, intervention and treatment that those in the populated areas have access to.
3. To provide education and knowledge to first responders, teachers and students as well as business owners in rural areas on suicide prevention and warning signs.
5. To reach and connect with any community member who is in need whether they be right off the highway or 45 minutes down a dirt road. The belief of the Hope Center is that all members of the community should have the same opportunities for mental health and wellness.
6. To reach 80% sustainability with endowments and funding by 2020 so only a small percentage of financial income needs to be raised through grants or donation
The Aspen Hope Center provides a 24-hour confidential Hopeline (925-5858) to ensure that anyone who calls for help reaches a clinician anytime day or night, seven days per week.
Crisis Intervention and Individual Intensive Outpatient Program (I-IOP)
Approximately 82% of the individuals who call the Aspen Hope Center are in a state of crisis. 23% are from the farther regions of this rural community. Each person who calls in crisis requires an individualized approach to deal with his/her particular situation. The clinicians conduct an initial assessment over the phone, and often times they arrange for an in-person evaluation. This is when the crisis team becomes ‘mobile’ and the clinician meets the client at the Hope Center office or wherever the caller may be at the time. If an individual evaluated is deemed high risk, he/she may be entered into the I-IOP. This program is an alternative to inpatient hospitalization, where the client may remain in their home with loved ones and friends to support them while receiving specialized, wrap-around services from local practitioners and agencies. During the IIOP, several professionals see the client daily until he/she is stabilized and able to move into regular weekly therapy.
Community Education Programs
The Aspen Hope Center believes that education is the key to prevention. Several trainings are offered throughout the community, primarily the ‘We Can Talk’ Suicide Awareness Class, but also Psychiatric Emergencies, Crisis Management and De-escalation and Crisis 101. The Western Slope region has challenges with education and treatment resources, and the rural areas have the higher than average crisis rate. Hence, bringing education to the rural areas promotes prevention and provides treatment resources for future needs.
CR Impact Points
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CR Impact Points
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