March 2022/Issue XXX
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 Calling All Artists and Poets! 
The Thing with Feathers – Hope; What brings you light and lifts you up?

West Central Behavioral Health and AVA Gallery and Art Center in Lebanon are collaborating to celebrate May as National Mental Health Awareness Month with a month-long art show from April 15 – May 20 that wraps up its final weekend with a poetry reading on Saturday, May 14th afternoon at the AVA Gallery.

The art exhibit and poetry reading share the title, "The Thing with Feathers" from Emily Dickinson's "Hope" poem. The theme for both exhibit and reading is: "Hope; what brings you light and lifts you up?"

West Central seeks submissions of up to 3 pages of poetry by March 31. You can submit as 1, 2, or 3 poems. AVA Gallery also seeks visual artwork submissions reflecting the above theme. Submission details are on the AVA Gallery website at AVA's Call to Artists page.

Please consider sharing your creative talent with the community to help us celebrate National Mental Health Awareness Month!

Save the Date:
Poetry Reading & Art Reception | May 14, 2022

Image credit: Kelly Burgess, Monarch    
Reaching a
Student in Crisis

This Concord Monitor opinion piece about one of West Central's mobile crisis response team's outreaches at a local high school tells a powerful story about a life saved and a time-consuming, stressful, and costly emergency room visit avoided. There was an outpouring of feedback from the community about this story including:

"This service was recently utilized for my son...the quick response at the high school and by West Central greatly attributed to the fact that my son is alive today"

"Thank you for sharing! I had no idea this existed. I work as a librarian in a middle school...and am happy to see that we are improving our response to mental health crises"

"Great article! I work as a mental health provider in a school and value any opportunity to intervene early and avoid the ED if possible" 

"This sounds like a much needed service"

"Excellent, first thought was how we avoided a possible suicide! And, next how we avoided an awful experience going to an emergency room"

To those who wrote to us, we sincerely thank you. And to anyone
in NH experiencing a crisis moment, please call the NH Rapid Response Access Point hotline at 833-710-6477, or visit to chat online with a trained crisis clinician. Mobile Crisis Response Teams are available 24/7/365 as needed. As the article states,
"Call early, call often," please.
We're here to help in your time of need.
Workforce Challenges in Behavioral Health

Jay Couture of Seacoast Mental Health Center offers this insightful New Hampshire Bulletin opinion piece on the current state of the community behavioral health workforce in NH. Couture states: "In the past two years we have seen community mental health center vacancies skyrocket at the same time that demand for services has increased higher than we have ever seen. As of Jan. 31, 2022, we hit a high of 400 vacancies." The ten community mental health centers in New Hampshire, including West Central, are greatly impacted by this workforce shortage.

If you are interested in a career in behavioral health at West Central, please visit the Careers page on our website.
National Social Work Month

March is Social Work Month! The theme for 2022 is TheTime is Right for Social Work. During the month, take some time to learn about the the profession and celebrate all the social workers making postive constributions in the community!

Thank you to all of West Central's social workers and to the social workers who work hard everday in our region!
Here at West Central
Youth CAN Coalition

West Central's Scott Blewitt, Prevention Coordinator for the Youth CAN Coalition, offered youth and adults a chance at the Thump the Stump game at the 106th Newport Winter Carnival on February 12th. Click here to read more about this event and to learn about the Coalition!

The Youth CAN Coalition is here to strengthen and expand community partnerships to prevent and reduce substance misuse among youth in Claremont and Newport. Stay tuned for details on upcoming Coalition Drug-Free Communities events!

Click Here to visit and Like the "Youth CAN 603" Facebook page.
Integrated Care

West Central is pleased to announce the launch of its Integrated Care program. We will begin serving clients at the Claremont clinic on March 3, 2022. Integrated Care will allow certain West Central clients who otherwise are not able to access primary medical care to do so at our 52 West Pleasant Street adult clinic in Claremont. Click here to learn more.
We're hiring!

If you have an interest in helping others who truly need help, there's no more gratifying and meaningful work than in community behavioral health. Click Here for our Careers web page to find your next professional step that will make a world of difference for others, and you'll feel good about your work!

Watch this Video to learn more about how West Central clinicians and staff help their clients thrive.

We continue to encourage all our clients, staff, and all others in the community to get COVID-19 vaccines and booster shots, to get seasonal flu shots, and to mask up outside their homes.

Follow and Like us on LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook!
In the Community
Mobile Crisis

West Central's Roger Osmun and Bill Metcalf joined Sue Etkind of Eastman Cares for a Virtual Lunch & Learn meeting on February 11th to update the group on the new NH Rapid Response Access Point and Mobile Crisis Services implementation State-wide and in our region. Ken Dolkart, a West Central board member, recommended this topic to the Eastman Cares group. Thank you, Ken and Sue, and thank you Roger and Bill for this important and informative community update. Click the image to watch a recording of the presentation.

Pictured: Top left, Sue Etkind-Eastman Cares, Bill Metcalf -West Central, Roger Osmun-West Central.
Hannaford Helps

West Central has been selected by our local Hannaford store leadership as the benefiting non-profit in the Community Bag Program for the month of March and the Bloomin' 4 Good flower bouquet program in April. Visit Hannaford's in West Lebanon to buy a reusable Hannaford shopping bag in March or a Bloomin' 4 Good flower bouquet in April and $1 from each purchase will be donated to us. Every bit adds up.
Dave Celone (in jacket with blue mask) of West Central stopped by the local Hannaford store in West Lebanon to thank store staff for including West Central in its Hannaford Helps donation program for March and April.

Thank you Hannaford of
West Lebanon!  
Mobile Food Pantry
Runnings in Claremont
March 8th, Noon-2:00 PM
Do you like what we're doing in our community? If you're able to make a gift to us, please do. We're a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) non-profit serving clients in the Upper Valley and Sullivan County with offices in Lebanon, Claremont, and Newport, NH. Last year, we extended nearly $600,000 in unreimbursed charitable care to vulnerable people in need of our services. No gift is too small, and we accept monthly recurring contributions on our online giving page. For more information, please visit our Giving page or contact
Dave Celone at
Gifts of any size make a difference to help save lives.
Share This Newsletter...You Might Save a Life
This newsletter is sent monthly to West Central staff, Board & Committee members, and our many friends and supporters. Please share it with your friends and family so people remember our name and the work we do as this region's community mental health, substance use disorder, and 24/7 mobile crisis response center.

When people in need know who we are,
they'll contact us early, before a crisis occurs.

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NH Rapid Response Access Point
24/7 Crisis Support
(call or text)