Park Center News
Sexual assault survivors share their stories and art at April event
FORT WAYNE, Ind. - As April rapidly approaches, we are reminded of Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. Park Center, a not-for-profit community mental healthcare provider, knows our community can make a difference. Join us this April in the fight to educate our community about the prevalence of Sexual Assault around us, its destructive nature, and to hear the stories of survivors.
With this undertaking in our mind, Park Center would like to invite everyone to participate in SHINE- an art exhibit and testimonials by survivors and caring individuals within the community who are focused on bringing awareness to victims of sexual assault. Each year more than a quarter of a million people are sexually assaulted in the United States. Sexual violence affects people of all ages, ethnicities and backgrounds. One out of six women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape. Researchers have also found that 1 in 6 men have experienced abusive sexual experiences before age 18, as reported by the Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network (RAINN).
SHINE will feature the exhibited artwork of sexual assault survivors and community partners, including the Fort Wayne Sexual Assault Treatment Center and The Lutheran Foundation. This exhibit will allow survivors the opportunity to channel their experiences and promote healing through the powerful expression of art.
Ramifications of violent acts are long lasting. RAINN reports victims of sexual assault are three times more likely to suffer depression, six times more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, 13 times more likely to abuse alcohol, 26 times more likely to abuse drugs and 4 times more likely to contemplate suicide.
SHINE is being held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on April 28 at the Park Center conference center. The Lutheran Foundation will be speaking on resources available to the public and highlighting information available on its LOOKup Indiana website.
Park Center earns The Joint Commission's Gold Seal of Approval®
The Gold Seal of Approval is a symbol of quality that reflects an organization's commitment to providing safe and effective patient care.
Park Center invites well-known speaker Liana Lowenstein to present Favorite Parenting Techniques
Park Center invites author, sought-afte speaker and child psychotherapist Liana Lowenstein, MSW, to speak on her favorite parenting techniques. The community event, open to the public, was held at the main branch of the Allen County Public Library on May 15, 2015. Lownstein's presentation offered parenting tips and creative strategies and techniques to help cope with some of the challenges of parenting. Lowenstein has been working with children and their families since 1988. She is internationally recognized for her innovative work including numerous books on child and family therapy.
Park Center Introduces New Online Program. Beating the Blues offers an accessible, affordable option for those with mild to moderate depression or anxiety
(Fort Wayne, IN)-Park Center, a private, nonprofit mental health provider offering a full continuum of services, has introduced a program designed for adults with mild to moderate depression or anxiety.
"Beating the Blues" is an online cognitive behavioral therapy program consisting of eight self-guided sessions. While new to northeast Indiana, the program has a proven track record, with 7 out of 10 participants reporting an improvement in their depression or anxiety. Because it's offered online, participants can complete the program from the convenience of their own home.
Park Center President and Chief Executive Officer Paul Wilson, MSSW, MHA, says Beating the Blues will provided a much needed option for those who need help.
"Mild to moderate anxiety and depression are actually quite common, affecting approximately one in five people," Wilson explains. "Unfortunately, too few of those people seek the help they need. We believe Beating the Blues makes treatment more accessible, removing some of the most common barriers to treatment."
Richard Hite, Ph.D., Vice President, Adult Community Services at Park Center, adds that while the method used to deliver the program is innovative, Beating the Blues is based in a longstanding, proven treatment approach.
"The program was developed by experts in cognitive behavioral therapy," Dr. Hite says. "The advantage of Beating the Blues is that it leverages technology to make CBT even easier to access."
One of the highest priorities for Park Center is maintaining participant privacy and confidentiality. Beating the Blues is only offered to adults 18 years of age and older and Wilson says that Park Center will follow the same protocols for Beating the Blues as with its other services.
"We're proud to have earned the trust of thousands of clients and families over the years," Wilson says, "and we will adhere to the same high standards with this program. All participant information will be kept strictly confidential, just as if they were to seek treatment in one of our facilities."
Dr. Hite also says that Beating the Blues is meant as an alternative to other treatment methods, not a replacement for them.
"While the population as a whole has become much more accustomed to online services, we know others may prefer a more traditional approach," Dr. Hite says. "Beating the Blues, then, is just one option-and an especially important one for those who might never otherwise seek treatment."
The eight sessions included in Beating the Blues allow participants to progress at their own pace. Each session is approximately 50 minutes in length: long enough to provide depth while also concise enough to fit into a busy schedule. The session schedule is as follows:
- Session 1: Getting started. Participants learn how to pinpoint their challenges.
- Session 2: Setting goals. Participants explore the steps they can take to deal with depression or anxiety.
- Sessions 3 - 5: Taking control. Participants learn techniques toward recovery.
- Sessions 6 - 7: Build on success. Participants continue to implement the techniques they have learned, while accelerating their progress.
- Session 8: Planning ahead. Participants review the sessions and set goals for the future.
The program includes a professional healthcare facilitator who helps them progress through the program. While this person will not provide any direct counseling services, he or she also will help participants understand if they need intervention beyond the Beating the Blues program.
Wilson says this reflects Park Center's primary goal in offering Beating the Blues: giving northeast Indiana residents more options to take control of depression and anxiety.
"As a trusted provider of behavioral health services," Wilson says, "Park Center provides a comprehensive set of options. We're excited to offer this program because ultimately it will ensure that more of the people we're here to serve will be able to get help."
Bluffton Park Center Holds Open House to Celebrate Building Expansion
For some time, Park Center's Bluffton office has been bursting at the seams. Having to lease more office space was the way the problem was dealt with for several years, until building expansion plans were established, approved and finally completed. The expansion will enable that office to offer new services and/or develop current programming. We are now very proud to announce that the construction process is finished. We were able to operate as smoothly as possible during the construction and have now transitioned to our expanded space.
As we now embark on a new chapter in the provision of mental health services in the Wells County community, we continue to look for opportunities to provide needed services to citizens in Wells County in the best way we know how. As Park Center's mission states, "we strive to facilitate and support your journey toward recovery."
Pictured below at the ribbon-cutting ceremony on April 19 are Bluffton Chamber of Commerce members, Bluffton Mayor Ted Ellis and Park Center staff. Photo courtesy of the Wells County Chamber of Commerce.