Ensuring Services for Seniors
The North River Expanded Mental Health Services Program serves a rich and diverse community on the northwest side of Chicago. Immediately following the successful creation of the North River EMHSP, the Coalition began conducting a community-wide mental health needs assessment to deteremine priority areas for the new mental health services made available.
After meeting with local community groups, faith groups, service providers, and residents, the Coalition determined that seniors were in particular need of the new mental health services.
The North River Seniors Advocacy and Access Network consists of over 25 local community groups, faith groups, senior leaders, and residents working together to ensure that the mental health needs of seniors are being met and developing new strategies to make the services available to seniors living in the community.
The Coalition is currently developing the Seniors Access Network to create a community-wide system of access points where seniors can easily and quickly receive the mental health help they need.
The Seniors Access Network consists of community organizations, service providers, ethnic and cultural organizations, senior social groups, and faith-based groups within the community. The goal of the Senior Access Network is to break down the barriers to access that seniors often face by developing true community access points. These access points will reach a greater population of seniors by eliminating geographic and ethnic barriers and alleviating stigma by allowing seniors access to services in a more comfortable and familiar way.