United Way of Southeast Louisiana (UWSELA) announced the distribution of grant funding to support suicide prevention, mental health services and crisis response in St. Tammany Parish amidst the ongoing public health and economic crisis. They will grant $15,000 in immediate support to the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office (STPSO) for its crisis intervention team and mental health first aid classes.
St. Tammany Sheriff Randy Smith said many times deputies are the first to encounter someone suffering from a mental crisis, and the funding will be used to ensure they are able to assist those individuals and their families accordingly.
The funding was made possible through the 2020 Red Beans’ N’ Rice cook-offs held in west and east St. Tammany. UWSELA organizes the annual cook-offs in partnership with St. Tammany Fire Districts (No. 1, No. 4 and No. 12), St. Tammany Parish Government, Covington Fire Department, Slidell Fire Department and Camellia Beans.
If you’re thinking about suicide, are worried about a friend or loved one, or would like emotional support, dial 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Crisis Intervention Specialists are ready to listen, provide emotional support and help you develop a safety plan if necessary.