Down Syndrome Innovations and Johnson County Mental Health Center partner to provide therapy services to individuals with Down syndrome
Advancing their mission to provide life-changing support and services to individuals with Down syndrome in our community, Down Syndrome Innovations has partnered with Johnson County Mental Health Center to provide weekly, in-person therapy services at DSI’s office in Mission.
JCMHC will provide a licensed mental health clinician who will meet with individuals and families served by DSI every Thursday.
“This collaboration will positively impact the individuals and families we serve by ensuring access to mental health services in an environment they know and trust,” said Jason Drummond, Ed.D., President and Chief Executive Officer at Down Syndrome Innovations. “We are so grateful for the commitment of Tim DeWeese and the entire team at Johnson County Mental Health Center to make this possible.”
At least half of all children and adults with Down syndrome will encounter a major mental health concern during their lifetime, according to the National Down Syndrome Society. Common mental health challenges faced by individuals with Down syndrome include anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive behaviors and oppositional behaviors.
“At the core of our service, we believe in helping a person build their skills and future with self-determination, but we also recognize that mental health can be a significant barrier to his or her ability to self-regulate for optimal daily functioning, see beyond the crisis or demands of today, or motivate themselves to do the work to achieve the next step,” shared Sarah Mai, OTR/L, Vice President of Lifespan Services at Down Syndrome Innovations. “It’s imperative we address the needs of the whole person – and mental health support has been neglected for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.”
The partnership with JCMHC will give DSI’s service providers a direct, immediate connection to mental health care for the individuals they serve. JCMHC will provide short-term therapy – a total of 8-12 sessions – and referrals for individuals needing long-term behavioral health services.
“So much of our work is about meeting people where they’re at in the community, and that wouldn’t be possible without partnerships like this one,” said Tim DeWeese, director of Johnson County Mental Health Center. “We’re proud and honored to bring our mental health services directly to the clients Down Syndrome Innovations serves every day and connect with them in a space they feel comfortable.”
“Our partnership with Johnson County Mental Health Center will not only benefit the individuals and families we serve, but also our team and the larger community,” said Drummond. “When organizations like ours join together, the ways we can impact the lives of people in our community are endless.”
Down Syndrome Innovations
Down Syndrome Innovations is a non-profit 501(C)(3) organization whose mission is to provide life-changing support and services that enable people with Down syndrome to live to their fullest potential. Down Syndrome Innovations, formerly Down Syndrome Guild of Greater Kansas City, was founded in 1984 and serves as the expert resource and lead community mobilizer for sharing knowledge and creating solutions for people with Down syndrome. To learn more, please visit kcdsi.org or call 913-384-4848.
Johnson County Mental Health Center
As a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic, Johnson County Mental Health Center offers a wide range of mental health and substance use services in Johnson County, Kan. More information about those services is available by visiting jocogov.org/mentalhealth or calling the 24/7 crisis line at 913-268-0156 to connect with a licensed mental health professional.