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Mental health issues of concern to AAUW | Lifestyle

There is help in this community for those who suffer from mental health issues and substance abuse addiction. American Association of University Women learned about the available help when Josh Pierce spoke at their recent meeting.

Pierce is the president and founder of Cornerstone Center for Counseling. He grew up in Tehachapi and moved away to attend college. During the next 10 years he studied to become a minister, but in 2012 after a mental breakdown caused by depression, he shifted his ministerial focus to fighting the stigma against mental health illness and care.

In November of 2017, Joshua returned to Tehachapi and opened Cornerstone as a way of providing affordable mental health care to a community in need. After a year of working in the local prison as a substance abuse counselor, Pierce began to see the need for a full-service substance abuse treatment program in Tehachapi. Cornerstone was ready to open in March 2020 and fill this void. Then COVID-19 shut things down. Now they are in a new location, have a full staff, and are ready to serve the community.

Pierce introduced Veronica Corcona, one of Cornerstone’s counselors. She specializes in helping abused women and working with those who abuse. She said abusing is a family pattern, and those who grow up with abusers often become abusers themselves.

AAUW women learned Pierce and his team work tirelessly to serve those in need in Tehachapi, especially those trapped in the disease of addiction. Pierce speaks for those who cannot speak for themselves.

AAUW promotes equity and education for women and girls. Tehachapi Mountain Branch is community-minded and proud of its involvement in Tehachapi, especially its scholarship program and Tech Trek activity. See for more information.

Phyllis Belcher is a member of AAUW.

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