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Advocates provide mental health resources after KY flooding

MARTIN, Ky. — Counselors in eastern Kentucky are working to raise awareness of mental health resources for those in communities impacted by flooding. 

What You Need To Know

  • Counselors with Christian Appalachian Project are providing resources for mental health
  • This includes mental health resources for adults and children
  • Chris Griffith, a counselor with CAP, says mental health is important to deal with early
  • The flood has caused mental health issues on top of many other challenges

Chris Griffith has seen firsthand the devastation flooding had on his community. 

“These are my people. I am them and we’re all brothers and sisters in this community in one way or another,” Griffith said.

Griffith, who is the program manager and counselor for Christian Appalachian Project, says the last few weeks in eastern Kentucky have been difficult. 

“Some of those folks were struggling to begin with and so to have all of your worldly possessions taken away in one fell swoop has been really, really tough for all those folks,” Griffith said.

Losing everything, or even the guilt of surviving traumatic events like these, is something Griffith and his staff are working to combat with mental health check ins. 

“We know that when someone goes through a traumatic experience like this flooding, this devastation, loss, even loss of life. Looking around and seeing your neighbor’s homes destroyed, just so much loss, so much grief, we know that when that happens, it’s important to process that and to debrief,” Griffith said.

Born and raised in eastern Kentucky, Griffith says he understands the difficulties in this area, and now the flood just adds an extra layer of challenges. 

“There’s a great pride in our people, a tremendous resilience. That’s a wonderful thing on the one hand. On the other hand, sometimes folks don’t want to ask for help,” Griffith said.

Christian Appalachian Project provides counseling services in Martin, inside their distribution center. Griffith says the resource is not only for adults but also for children.

“They experienced this kind of trauma and this kind of sort of emotional instability and seeing their homes lost and all their resources drift away. It’s damaging,” Griffith said.

As clean up continues, and immediate needs are being met, Griffith says it’s time to take a look at the mental health aspect and being a resource for one another. The distribution center in Martin is open Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and anyone seeking counseling services can ask for a reference in person. 


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