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Arizona's Children Association expanding its Mohave County behavioral health services for youth

Arizona’s Children Association is using a $200,000 grant it recently received to expand the children and family behavioral health services it offers in Mohave County.

The association has an office in Lake Havasu City that offers child welfare and a limited amount of behavioral health services to Mohave County residents. A recent $200,000 grant from the Health First Foundation of Northern Arizona will be used to expand the facility and hire the staff necessary to provide more services, said Tracy Thurston, the association’s chief behavioral health officer. 

“We’re going to have case management services, we’re going to have psychiatric, medication sorts of services and so we will really be able to encompass the whole realm of service delivery for that area," she said.

There’s a need for more of these kinds of behavioral health services in Mohave County, especially for ones focused on children and young adults ages 0 to 22.  

“We know that in the Mohave County area there is sort of a lack of access to those resources and so it’s extremely important for us so that we can help promote healthy coping strategies and resilience among those vulnerable children and families," Thurston said. 

Families have told the association it can take a long time for them to be seen by a provider, and the need for services has grown during the pandemic, leaving providers even more stretched thin, Thurston said.

The association is hopeful it can relieve some of this pressure by offering more services at its Lake Havasu City location by the spring. 

Rocio Hernandez was a senior field correspondent at KJZZ from 2020 to 2022.