The Texas Health and Human Services Commission has received an $11.1 million Federal Emergency Management Agency grant for the Texans Recovering Together program, which provides free, confidential crisis counseling and referral services for survivors of Hurricane Harvey.
“Hurricane Harvey survivors may need to talk to someone who understands their situation and can help them work through trauma, uncertainty, stress and other common responses to a disaster,” said Sonja Gaines, Associate Commissioner for HHSC Intellectual and Developmental Disability and Behavioral Health Services. “This grant will help more Texans get the help and local crisis counseling services they need.”
The $11.1 million FEMA Regular Services Program grant expands Harvey-related counseling services beyond the 18 Texas counties funded by a FEMA Immediate Services Program grant previously received by HHSC. The new grant will continue those existing services and is making the services available in 13 more counties.
Services provided as part of the RSP grant will now be available in a total of 31 counties. The services have been added in Chambers, Colorado, Fort Bend, Hardin, Jasper, Jefferson, Karnes, Matagorda, Newton, Orange, Tyler, Waller and Wharton counties. The grant also continues services to Aransas, Bee, Brazoria, Calhoun, DeWitt, Galveston, Goliad, Harris, Jackson, Kleberg, Lavaca, Liberty, Montgomery, Nueces, Refugio, San Patricio, Walker and Victoria counties.
Through Texans Recovering Together, local providers are visiting homes and community settings to offer counseling, information, resources and stress education to help Harvey survivors cope with disaster-related trauma. In addition to empowering affected families and individuals to move forward, the grant aims to enable mental health resiliency among those who were left displaced, jobless, homeless, impoverished or faced with stress and other common responses to trauma.
Harvey survivors can learn how to access local, free crisis counseling services and find other disaster behavioral health resources at hhs.texas.gov/disaster-assistance. Residents in the 31 counties currently served through the program can dial 2-1-1 to be routed to a local provider.