On Tuesday, May 2, 2023, Eureka City High School in Eureka, California officially, opened its new wellness center in partnership with its federally qualified health center partner, Open Door, via their Mental Health Service Professionals (MHSP) grant. The high school’s is the first of many to be developed across Eureka City Schools [ECS] campuses. These centers will aim to fulfill Priority Area 3 of the ECS Strategic Plan, which focuses on Social-Emotional Wellness.
ECS Trustee Area 1 Board Member Lisa Ollivier explains that the Board created the Wellness Center as a space for students to reregulate, reconnect, calm down, and seek out services. Students can retreat to the calm space when they are feeling stressed or overwhelmed; and can access qualified mental health staff to seek out helpful resources and services such as individual and group therapy.
The Wellness Center’s vision is to create a support system that allows school to be a place of healing. Ollivier anticipates that the space will “help with morale, students feeling empowered, students feeling valued, and them knowing- people heard that they needed help.”
Even before the official opening, students have been able to access the calm space for the past few months and are already seeing the benefits of having access to a safe environment where they can reset and return to class regulated.
The Wellness Center has long been a primary sustainability component for Eureka City’s MHSP grant and will now serve as a field-based training venue for graduate students in counseling, social work, and psychology as well, of course, as a direct service venue for their students!