Premera grant provides key funding for peer support services that improve health outcomes for people experiencing behavioral health challenges.
EVERETT, Wash.–People experiencing behavioral health challenges and homelessness now have improved access to peer support services through Compass Health’s GROWTH Center in Everett, thanks to a $75,000 grant from Premera Blue Cross through its Premera Social Impact Program.
Compass Health’s GROWTH Center (Growth. Recovery. Opportunity. Wellness. Trust. Hope.) is a peer recovery support center for people with behavioral health disorders. Attendees participate in groups and activities that promote socialization, build self-esteem, teach resiliency skills, encourage job readiness and support recovery. The center also offers computer access to help participants accomplish their recovery goals.
The GROWTH Center employs certified peer counselors – professionals with lived behavioral health experience – who oversee daily operations, lead groups and activities, provide participant support, and help people access additional behavioral health services through Compass Health.
“Compass Health’s wraparound support center is a vital resource for individuals struggling with mental health challenges and other health access issues,” said Paul Hollie of the Premera Social Impact Program. “We are honored to support its critical work to improve community health outcomes.”
The use of certified peer counselors has been shown to improve behavioral health outcomes for decades. According to Mental Health America, peer support has a transformative effect on participants and health systems by improving overall health and quality of life; increasing engagement with services and supports; decreasing hospitalization and inpatient stays; and reducing the overall cost of services.
In 2019, Compass Health also plans to break ground on its Broadway Redevelopment project to build 82 new units of affordable housingon the 3300 block of Lombard Avenue in Everett, with integrated treatment and support services for people with chronic behavioral health issues. The GROWTH Center is slated to move into the new building to provide participants and housing residents with access to the latest services and supports.
“We appreciate this generous grant from the Premera Social Impact Program to support our GROWTH Center and increase access to its services,” said Tom Kozaczynski the chief development and communications officer for Compass Health. “This funding will help ensure that our community members have a safe place to gain peer support and skills that improve their health outcomes and recovery.”
About Compass Health
Compass Health is Northwest Washington’s behavioral healthcare leader. The organization integrates behavioral health and medical care services to support clients and communities when and where they are needed. Building on a century of experience, Compass Health is forging new, nationally recognized models of care that bring together highly skilled mental health professionals, primary care providers, peer counselors and others to treat the entire person. From comprehensive mental health treatment to crisis intervention, children’s services and community education, Compass Health serves people of all ages throughout Snohomish, Skagit, Island, San Juan and Whatcom counties. Learn more at compasshealth.org.
About Premera Social Impact Program
Premera Blue Cross, a not-for-profit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association based in Mountlake Terrace, Wash., launched the Premera Social Impact Program aimed at supporting behavioral health issues, particularly in underserved communities. Premera, which serves Washington and Alaska, believes that overall health will improve by addressing behavioral health issues — especially for people of color and low-income populations where community health data consistently shows treatment disparities exist. By treating behavioral health, people’s physical health will improve — something that’s good for the company and good for the community. Learn more at premera.com/socialimpact.
Brendan Hughes for Compass Health