Mental Health

  • Free Mental Health Screenings in Collier County

    September 17, 2020

    DLC has joined several behavioral health organizations throughout Collier County and Lee County to establish a community-wide initiative called Healthy Minds. This initiative was developed in response to COVID-19 to identify and address behavioral health challenges community members have been experiencing. Over the...

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  • Returning to School in the Age of COVID-19

    September 14, 2020

    The new school year is well under way and what a difference six months has made! For many parents and guardians, choosing the best back-to-school option has been difficult. There were pros and cons to each choice, and many are still struggling with...

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  • Feeding Your Brain: Your Mental Health Will Thank You!

    August 24, 2020

    -By DLC Children's Outreach Specialist Jessica Liria, M.S. It is not often that I see shoppers in the grocery store reading the labels of the food they purchase. I admit, I was not usually one to do this either. As I struggled with...

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  • SAMHSA’s Eight Dimensions of Wellness

    August 07, 2020

    -By DLC Children’s Outreach Specialist Jessica Liria, M.S. What comes to mind when you think of the term “wellness?” Is it being physically fit? Of sound mind? Being self-sufficient? The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has identified eight dimensions of...

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  • How to Build Skills through Coping Strategies      

    July 20, 2020

    By DLC Children’s Outreach Specialist Jessica Liria Sadness, anger, anxiety—these are normal human emotions that everyone feels. So why do some of us have a harder time managing them than others? While the answer is not an easy one, considering the variety of...

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  • Warning Signs of Children’s Mental Health Concerns

    May 04, 2020

    Mental health challenges can be difficult to identify because, unlike physical ailments, the signs and symptoms can be subtle or even hidden. By understanding the 10 warning signs below, identified by our Children's Outreach Specialist Jessica Liria, you can be better prepared to...

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  • #StandUp for Mental Health Awareness Month

    May 04, 2020

    May is Mental Health Awareness Month and with COVID-19 still affecting millions, directly and indirectly, it is an opportune time to increase education and identify resources.  Regardless of whether you personally need support or not, there are many things that can be done...

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  • Getting to Know DLC’s Prevention Specialist Kelly Ballesteros Buitrago

    April 16, 2020

    Name & Title: Kelly Ballesteros Buitrago, Prevention Specialist In her position, Kelly Ballesteros Buitrago implements evidence based prevention programs throughout the community, and in both school and after-school settings. Prevention programming focuses on reducing risk factors and increasing protective factors. Youth of all...

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  • Getting to Know DLC’s Prevention Specialist Vanessa Rivero Gil

    April 16, 2020

    Name & Title: Vanessa Rivero Gil, Prevention Specialist In her position, Vanessa Rivero Gil implements evidence-based prevention programs throughout the community, and in both school and after-school settings. Prevention programming focuses on reducing risk factors and increasing protective factors. Youth of all ages,...

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  • COVID-19 Tips & Resources for Parents

    April 09, 2020

    With many parents spending an increased amount of time at home with their children in light of COVID-19, David Lawrence Center’s Children’s Outreach Specialist Jessica Liria provides the following list of eight coping tips for parents to mindfully make it through these times...

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  • Tips for Mindfulness During COVID-19

    March 30, 2020

    Tips for Mindfulness and Coping with Stress around COVID-19 DLC's Children's Outreach Specialist Jessica Liria provides some ideas and suggestions for how to practice mindfulness amidst the stress and challenges that COVID-19 has presented to our society.  Gaining New Perspective As the number...

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  • Advocacy Request: #StandUp for Mental Health by Contacting your Local Legislators

    January 14, 2020

    Naples Daily News recently published an editorial called, "It's time for Legislature to improve Florida's weak record on mental health" that includes comprehensive information about current mental health challenges and legislative initiatives -- and encourages YOU to let our Legislators know the improvements...

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  • Collier County Commissioners Pass First-Ever Mental Health and Addiction Services Strategic Plan

    January 13, 2020

    And the Aye’s have it! With a unanimous 5-0 vote from Collier County Commissioners, 2020 marks the first year of the County’s first-ever strategic plan for how to better care for residents struggling with mental health and substance use disorders. The five-year plan,...

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  • DLC’s New FACT Team: “A Hospital without Walls”

    December 12, 2019

    David Lawrence Center has a new FACT (Florida Assertive Community Treatment) team that provides community-based mental health care for adults experiencing severe and persistent mental health challenges. The FACT team includes nurses, a psychiatric nurse practitioner, a housing specialist, a vocational specialist, a...

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  • Hope for the Holidays

    December 09, 2019

    Coping with depression around the holidays As the refrain “It’s the most wonderful time of the year” plays in every store and radio station across the country, the holidays are anything but wonderful for many. Though depression may occur at any time of...

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  • Q&As with DLC’s Prevention Team

    October 03, 2019

    Our DLC Prevention Team provides insight on how to identify and discuss anxiety with your child, and clears up confusion over CBD products. Q: My daughter is in 8th grade and appears to be struggling with anxiety. I’m not sure why. She has...

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  • Reaching the Broken

    July 31, 2019

    Storytellers Creative Arts is bringing hope and healing to DLC clients through a program that breaks through tough exteriors and goes right to the heart. As a child, Bill Barnett worked through his own personal struggles by turning to the arts. As an...

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  • Employee Spotlight: Get to Know Prevention Specialist Jane Teszler

    July 31, 2019

    Name & Title: Jane Teszler, Prevention Specialist, October 2016-Present In her role, Teszler implements evidence-based prevention programs throughout the community, and in both school and after-school settings. Prevention programming focuses on reducing risk factors and increasing protective factors. Youth of all ages, ranging...

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  • Tips for Managing Anxiety & Panic Attacks

    July 15, 2019

    Anxiety is one of the most common mental health symptoms, and people can experience it in varying degrees. You may be feeling everyday stress that you can generally manage, or you could be experiencing an extreme panic disorder that makes it hard to...

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  • Too Many Kids, Not Enough Beds

    June 11, 2019

    One day last November, the children’s crisis stabilization unit (CCSU) at David Lawrence Center was already beyond full, with 11 clients receiving critical care for their urgent needs. But that was only the beginning. By the end of the evening, that number had...

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  • Two DLC Staff Receive Mental Health First Aid Training

    June 10, 2019

    DLC's Ariella VanHara and Jessica Liria were recently certified as MentaI Health First Aid Trainers, and here's how they’re making a difference. Ariella VanHara grew up watching her mom, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), help people in their time of need, and...

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  • What Does A Panic Attack Feel Like?

    April 08, 2019

    Have you ever suddenly started sweating, felt dizzy, began to tremble, and maybe even lost your breath? You might get nauseous, feel numb, or get chills. It may happen when you’re in a stressful situation, or it could just come out of nowhere....

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  • No Easy Road to Recovery

    March 07, 2019

    Do you remember where you were on April 20, 1999? Austin Eubanks will never forget. He was curled up under a table at Columbine High School, fearing for his life. Two students went on a shooting spree that day, in what was then...

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  • Prevention Corner: Getting to Know Prevention Specialist Nicole Combs

    March 07, 2019

    Name & Title: Nicole Combs, Prevention Specialist, May 2015-Present Nicole implements evidence-based prevention programs throughout the community, and in both school and after-school settings. Prevention programming focuses on reducing risk factors and increasing protective factors. Youth of all ages, ranging from pre-kindergarten through 12th...

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  • New State Law Helps Students

    March 07, 2019

    After the death of a family member, a 16-year-old local high school student was struggling with depression. Someone notified the school’s social worker, who began meeting with this young woman. And when the student missed school one day, the social worker notified authorities...

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  • How Do I Talk to My Kids About Drugs?

    March 07, 2019

    Q&A with Jessica Liria, M.S. | Supervisor of Prevention Services Q: I know I should be having discussions with my kids about drugs, but I have no idea what to say. How do I bring it up? A: It may seem tough, or...

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  • Mental Health Access Improvement Act

    March 06, 2019

    On January 31, 2019, The Mental Health Access Improvement Act (S. 286), was introduced into the U.S. Congress. This bipartisan bill, if passed, would expand benefits to Medicare recipients so they can access behavioral health services provided by licensed mental health counselors (LMHCs) and marriage...

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  • Defending the Defenseless

    February 07, 2019

    Mariana Perez has always looked out for the little guy ...and still does so, serving a community in great need at DLC’s Immokalee office. Mariana Perez used to get into fights as a little girl growing up in Colombia ... not because she...

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  • Coral Vargas

    Prevention Corner: Getting to Know DLC’s Prevention Specialist Coral Vargas

    January 07, 2019

    Name & Title: Coral Vargas, Prevention Specialist, July 2017-Present In her position, Vargas implements evidence-based prevention programs throughout the community, in both in-school and afterschool settings. Prevention programming focuses on reducing risk factors and increasing protective factors. Youth of all ages, ranging from pre-kindergarten through...

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  • What Kids Can Do To Stand Up To Bullying

    January 07, 2019

    StopBullying.gov, a Website managed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, has five great tips for kids about how to deal with bullying: Treat everyone with respect Nobody should be mean to others. Stop and think before you say or do...

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  • How to Deal with Bullies

    January 07, 2019

    Here's what one mom has learned after her daughter stood up for a friend in a bullying situation at school . . . and what you can learn from it, too. -By Karen When the phone rang and I looked at my caller...

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  • In Pursuit of Happy Endings

    November 08, 2018

    She’d often be seen walking the streets of Naples, acting abnormally, talking nonsense, disturbing the peace. But she was no physical threat to anyone. She had been arrested numerous times, but all for naught. She was caught in an ugly cycle of spending...

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  • Treatment not jail; ‘yes’ vote invests in mental health, saves for taxpayers

    October 12, 2018

     The following commentary, by Scott Burgess, David Lawrence Center President & CEO, ran in the Naples Daily News on October 11, 2018 (view the article here). Burgess was asked to explain how the new mental health facility proposed as part of a county...

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  • Bring More Mental Health Resources to Collier County: Vote YES in November

    September 24, 2018

    David Lawrence Center proudly supports the Naples Chamber of Commerce in the One Collier initiative. If you’re not familiar with One Collier, it is a political committee formed in Collier County by the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce to support the passage of...

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  • Help for Troubled Students

    September 18, 2018

    Sen. Kathleen Passidomo is Legislator of the Year after passing a bill to provide every child in Florida schools with access to mental health services When State Senator Kathleen Passidomo was asked to chair a committee on education spending in Florida, she rounded...

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  • How Holistic Help Heals

    February 13, 2018

    Through a variety of holistic therapy programs, adults and children are finding ways to cope with life's stresses at David Lawrence Center. A 50-something man who was trapped in substance use for years finally found a way to beat his addiction by going...

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  • Bridging the Funding Gap: Why Your Support Is Needed

    December 06, 2017

    Government funding only goes so far at David Lawrence Center, where private gifts and donations are indispensable for the work we do. When it comes to state spending for mental health, Florida ranks 49th in the nation, almost at the bottom. Florida spends...

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  • All We Need Is Love

    December 06, 2017

    Naples Children and Education Foundation, founders of the Winter Wine Festival, will host “Meet the Kids Day” on January 26, where you can meet some of the children that are helped by the community’s support. Erin was having a difficult time negotiating the...

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  • The Best Thing Ever

    By Sarah

    November 02, 2017

    After surviving an abusive childhood, I was severely depressed, cutting myself, and wanting to die. I ended up at David Lawrence Center . . . and I started to feel hope for the first time. A little over a year ago, I was...

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  • “I Would Lash Out at My Family”

    June 05, 2017

    Giselle’s anger was out of control, and it hit her family the hardest . . . sometimes quite literally. When Giselle lost her cool, she would yell and scream, throw things, break things, and strike her siblings. Her mom, a single mother of...

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