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TDMHSAS Receives Federal Grant for Storm Survivor Mental Health Treatment

FEMA grant in response to March tornadoes
Thursday, March 26, 2020 | 10:32am

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—The Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (TDMHSAS) is receiving almost $500,000 from the federal government to support the mental health needs of survivors of recent tornados.

Tornadoes and severe storms on March 3, 2020, caused 25 weather-related deaths, damaged or destroyed more than 4,000 structures, including five public schools, left more than 100,000 residents without power, and closed state government offices.

The grant for $476,061 is through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Crisis Counseling & Training Program.  The funding will provide outreach and support services to storm survivors in Davidson, Putnam, and Wilson Counties.  TDMHSAS staff will be working with community behavioral health agencies Centerstone, Mental Health Cooperative, and Volunteer Behavioral Health Care System.

“On top of the tragic deaths, injuries, and destruction that comes with a natural disaster like this, there’s also invisible damage to the mental health of storm survivors.  Whether it’s the loss of a loved one, post-traumatic stress, or some other trauma, it’s natural for people to need professional help and healing,” said TDMHSAS Commissioner Marie Williams.  “We’re grateful to FEMA for this grant, and we’re thankful for our community behavioral health providers who will be delivering these services.”

FEMA and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) have an additional, longer-term program for mental health disaster response, and if further assistance is needed, TDMHSAS will apply for that grant to serve Tennesseans.

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About the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services
Our Mission: Creating collaborative pathways to resiliency, recovery, and independence for Tennesseans living with mental illness and substance use disorders.

Our Vision: A state of resiliency, recovery, and independence in which Tennesseans living with mental illness and substance use disorders thrive.