Youth Services System Opens New Office in Paden City
The new office offers help for Wetzel County Youth, located at 425 South Fourth Ave., in Paden City, is part of a statewide effort to better serve young people from 12-24 in need of mental or behavioral health care. The main speaker for the opening of the new Wetzel County Office was West Virginia State Senator Jeff Kessler.
“West Virginia communities are strong because we take care of each other. This center is one way that those needing help with substance abuse or other problems can find that help,” Senator Kessler said.
Kessler said all over the state of West Virginia there are young men and women who face a variety of problems, none more pressing today than substance abuse, depression and other mental health issues.
“It is important that the folks in all parts of Wetzel County have a place to go to receive the services they need. This office will serve those needs by putting them in touch with the help they need. We talk a lot about the resources we have here in the oil and gas industry but our most precious resource is our youth and I promise you this, I would never give up on my own children and I certainly will not give up on yours,” said Kessler.
He went on to say that in working together, we can make a difference and he was proud to be here and to provide assistance any way he can and his hat is off to youth services for the job their doing working with the troubled youth.
Jill Eddy, director of community based services, welcomed a large crowd of dignitaries and interested citizens. She said youth services system has been around for more than 40 years ago with the emergency youth shelters in Wheeling. She said they have over 600 employees now and offices throughout the area in the northern panhandle which offers a variety of mental health services to troubled youth. Eddy said the central regional office is housed in Wheeling in the old Northern Community College Building, but when applying for funding they really needed an office in Wetzel County.
Eddy said it takes community support to make this possible and she thanked the Wetzel county commissioners for the support in helping them find office based and for connecting them with Jim (Cork) Bowen of the Paden City Development Authority who worked very hard to make this happen and to provide the space at a reasonable rate which allowed them to use their grant money for staff and support.
“This is a place where young people can find help-to be evaluated, treated or referred to another resource, and be able to get on with their lives,” said Eddy.
She said the Regional Youth Services Center will give young people a way to seek help, to receive treatment and to participate in community based efforts that support them. Treatment will include substance abuse treatment, therapy, and recovery services along with community training which will be another role of this new effort.
The Bureau of Behavioral Health and Health Facilities and the WV DHHR have worked with local partners to create Regional Youth Services Center as a gateway to services for youth. Youth Services System is one of those partners, working with HealthWays in Brooke and Hancock County. The Paden City office will offer Wetzel County youth and their families their own access point to services.
The Paden City Development Authority (PCDA) said they were proud to support the Youth Services System, Inc. in their commitment to drug intervention and treatment in Paden City and the surrounding communities.
The PCDA owns and operates the Health and Recreation building for the City of Paden City and their citizens. Paden City is not immune to the drug problem that is plaguing the tri-state area.
“We are pleased to offer YSS an accessible and safe facility to have their regional base of operation. Their operation fits the philosophy of the PCDA very well. The PCDA wants to provide and encourage service organizations to locate in the H & R building to make them easily accessible to the citizens of Paden City and surrounding service areas.” Stated Jim (Cork) Bowen.
Currently, along with YSS, another H&R building tenant is the Wetzel/Tyler County Health Department. “We feel that having these resources available to our citizens makes the community better,” said Bowen.
Information on Youth Services System, Inc. can be obtained by calling 1-800-977-8918 an emergency staff is available 24 hours a day seven days a week. The Paden City office will be open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. They will be staffed with Anna Lehew, Therapist; Emily Cook, Engagement Specialist; Jamie Coen-Pickens, Youth Intervention Specialist; and Jordan Coughle, Peer Recovery Specialist.