A Tulsa nonprofit was recognized for the mental health resources it makes available to people calling 911.
During the 2021 National Conference for Mental Health Corporations of America, Family and Children's Services received the first awarded MHCA Most Innovative Member Award, which recognizes the work they are doing by embedding mental health experts in Tulsa’s 911 call center.
"We credit the Tulsa Area United Way for being innovative and allowing us to move forward with this vision in order for us to win this award,” Amanda Bradley, Associate Chief Program Officer for Community Outreach Psychiatric Emergency Services, or C.O.P.E.S., said.
Bradley said since September, they've had a team of 20 mental health experts in Tulsa’s 911 center, to help callers struggling with suicidal thoughts, depression, and anxiety.
She said the award couldn't have happened without their partnership with Tulsa police, the city's 911 Public Safety Communications Department, and the Tulsa Area United Way.
"So proud of Family and Children's Services for receiving this award,” Krista Hemme, Chief Marketing Officer for Tulsa Area United Way, said.
Hemme said their organization helps raise money for their nonprofit partners. She said it was their social innovation grant that helped kickstart C.O.P.E.S.' mission to fight mental health.
"It gave it that seed money to help get the idea up and running,” Hemme said.
In January, C.O.P.E.S saw an 11 percent increase in calls from adults compared to last January. Bradley said they expect the number of calls to increase as this pandemic continues.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, C.O.P.E.S. has mental health experts ready to help at all hours of the day.