Local

Organization provides mental health professionals for free counseling

CHARLOTTE — A local organization is connecting adults and children affected by the pandemic with free counseling by mental health professionals.

The Mental Health America of Central Carolinas program offers counseling for those who need it as a result from the stresses over the past year due to COVID-19.

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“I help them with anxiety and depression, some of the biggest things I see,” said Dr. Chasity Adams, licensed psychologist. “However, a lot of people have relationship concerns with their partners and parenting concerns.”

Adams is a provider who sees clients virtually or in person, while following COVID-19 guidelines.

Adams said many people are lonely during the pandemic, and that her patients may be the only person they see all week.

MHA of Central Carolinas listens to people’s needs and find counselors for them.

People can still be eligible even if they have insurance.

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“If your doctor’s copay for an annual physical is $30, then your mental health provider copay should be $30,” said Ericka Ellis-Steward, of MHA of Central Carolinas. “But some people, it can be $90, $100 or $150, so that still creates a barrier as well. So even someone who is insured can still qualify.”

Mental Health America received funding to provide the services at no cost through September.

People who live in Mecklenburg or Cabarrus counties are eligible.

Call Mental Health America at 704-365-3454 to sign up.