Emotional and Behavioral Problems Are on the Rise Among Youth in Oregon Villages

Emotional and Behavioral Problems: Youth Villages, a national nonprofit, provides counseling and therapy for children and their families in Central Oregon.

Oregon has the lowest access to mental health care and is among the states with the highest prevalence of mental disease, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Emotional and Behavioral Problems Are on the Rise Among Youth in Oregon Villages

According to Andrew Grover, executive director of Youth Villages Oregon, the demand for their services is higher than ever.

On Wednesday, Grover added, “We’re seeing young people encounter issues that are actually growing.” “There has been an increase in the number of suicide attempts and thoughts of suicide. Increasing substance misuse is a major and worrisome problem. Today’s difficulties exceed those of the pre-pandemic era.”

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Youth Villages Oregon has staffed their Redmond office with a supervisor and eight intense in-home and ER professionals to meet the demand for their services.

This week, commissioners in Deschutes County discussed renewing the organization’s $151,000 contract to continue delivering vital services to local adolescents and their families through its Intensive In-Home Behavioral Health Treatment program.

Services in this category range from care coordination to skill development to peer support to psychiatric care to counseling.

Grover explained that their typical time spent with a family after they participate in the intercept program is between four and six months.

Emotional and Behavioral Problems Are on the Rise Among Youth in Oregon Villages
Emotional and Behavioral Problems Are on the Rise Among Youth in Oregon Villages

According to Grover, a program specialist visits families at their homes, schools, and other community locations.

Additionally, Central Oregon has its own crisis support programs.

Deschutes County Behavioral Health, the St. Charles Health System, and other clinics and hospitals collaborate with the non-profit.

When their options are exhausted, “families will often bring these young individuals to the emergency hospital,” Grover explained.

According to Grover, in these emergency situations, they visit the family’s home within 24 hours to try to resolve the crisis that led to the ER visit.

Once the initial period of help has ended, which may take several months, the family is referred to a service that can help them for the foreseeable future.

Youth Villages also provide services to assist young people in making the change to adulthood.

Roughly 40,000 American households per year receive assistance from the charity.

About 80–100 families in Oregon get in-home services, and another 130–140 children who have aged out of the foster care system are also served.

Twenty-five to thirty families in Central Oregon is helped every single day by the nonprofit.

However, it has been challenging to keep up with the demand for services across Oregon.

“If we had twice as many workers, we could provide twice as much care,” “A statement made by Grover.

Youth Villages, like many other businesses and nonprofits in the wake of the pandemic, is having trouble filling positions and is actively recruiting new workers.

The youngest child the group worked with was three. They usually deal with teenagers between the ages of 12 and 16.

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Grover claims their services have a significant effect.

Eighty percent of patients are doing well a year after being released, “- Grover.

This can be determined by looking at factors such as whether or not the child is still living with his or her family, attending or having completed school, and having no run-ins with the law.

The Oregon Health Plan provides financial support, and the “department of human services” provides the organization with a contract.

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