County opens mental health training session to residents

May 9, 2022

As part of efforts to highlight May as Mental Health Month, Richland County’s Government and Community Services Department (GCS) is partnering with a local nonprofit treatment center for a training session on addiction and mental health.

The free, virtual event, set for 11 a.m. to noon Thursday, May 12 via Zoom, will focus on the biology of addiction and how addiction intersects with mental health. Participants will also learn about stress and effective coping skills and will practice techniques to reduce stress.

To register for the training, which is open to all ages, visit

“Through GCS’ engagement with the community, we have noticed an increased emphasis on mental health concerns and the need for resources,” said Kim Humphrey, GCS associate for Richland County.

“During the pandemic, the Kaiser Family Foundation found about 4 in 10 U.S. adults reported feeling symptoms of anxiety or depression, and at times increased anxiety and stress can lead to substance use disorders,” Humphrey said. “In light of this, our department is observing May as Mental Health Month with the organization Mental Health America.”

A community-based nonprofit, Mental Health America founded Mental Health Awareness Month in May 1949. Each year, the organization joins partners in providing support, educating the public and advocating for policies that support people with mental illness and their families. GCS staff hope to further that mission in Richland County.

“The goal of the month is to raise awareness, reduce stigma and highlight resources available in our community,” Humphrey said.

Staff from LRADAC, formerly referred to as the Lexington/Richland Alcohol and Drug Abuse Council, will lead the training session. The nonprofit offers an array of prevention, intervention and treatment programs in Richland and Lexington counties.

Those with questions on the virtual training can email Humphrey: [email protected].