HALO Project is an Impact Oklahoma Grant Finalist!

HALO Project is one of four finalists to be the recipient of the $100,000 Impact Oklahoma Grant!  We are so pleased to have been chosen and hoping and praying with all of our might that we are selected.  We know this grant money will change our community and have a significant impact in solving one of the biggest mental health issues Oklahoma faces.   To hear more about the problem and our solution, please read below.  To vote for HALO on May 20, join Impact Oklahoma.  You can learn more here: https://www.impactok.org/join-us/

 

The Problem:

In 1995, the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study was conducted by Kaiser Permanente and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It included over 17,000 participants.  The ACE study uncovered a link between adverse childhood experiences and adulthood chronic diseases as well as social and emotional challenges.  As the number of ACEs increases so does the risk for negative outcomes.   We know the more ACE’s a person has, the greater their risk for chronic disease, mental illness, violence and being a victim of violence.   Not only is this study valuable because it helps us understand the link between difficult events in childhood and how they affect us in adulthood, but it provides a numerical marker for how we are doing in regards to mental health from state to state.  The devastating news is that Oklahoma has the highest level of ACE’s out of any other state in the US.  Thus, Oklahoma children are being exposed to more painful events than anywhere else in the country.

At HALO we have been addressing this issue by making sure to bring the best possible mental health interventions used nationally to our great state of Oklahoma.  As a result, we have seen a significant improvement in the quality of services HALO and our partner agencies provide, but none of us could have anticipated the rise in need for mental health services as a result of Covid.  Depression is up by a third, we are seeing more suicidal ideation amongst our young adults and experiencing an increase in hopelessness associated with isolation and lack of community.   As a result of the increased need and HALO’s reputation to meet the need, we have well over 100 families on our waitlist on any given day.

 

The Solution:

At HALO, we have the solution and skill set to help those in need.  HALO has an amazing team of highly trained professionals working day and night to meet this need, but it is not enough.  Our HALO team was recently asked, “What is the biggest challenge we face as an organization currently?”  The answer, “We need more people that are trained like we are.”   The need is vast and an army of highly trained professionals in multiple organizations is needed to meet this need.

Our greatest hope lies in the formation of the Collaborative Impact Project.  The Collaborative Impact Project will create a high-quality, highly trained team of 65 mental health professionals designed to meet the mental health needs of Oklahoma’s vulnerable populations.

Counselors differ in a number of ways.  They differ by their level of passion, commitment and most notably by the number of specialized interventions they are trained in.  Once a counselor leaves college, they must receive additional training in modalities and interventions to meet the needs of their clients.  Most of the highly sought-after interventions that prove to be the most successful come with a hefty price tag, which prohibits even the most passionate therapists from being properly trained.   Imagine a doctor who cannot afford to be trained in the best surgical techniques to help a patient.  Mental health is similar and those entering the field are often not able to afford additional training.  Due to a number of unique factors, HALO is able to provide access to three specialized interventions at a very low cost.  The end result will be a team of therapists with the proper training to provide specialized mental health services at a fraction of the cost and in less than half the time.

 

The Collaborative Impact Project will provide training to 65 Oklahoma mental professionals from a variety of organizations in the following interventions:

Trust-Based Relational Intervention (TBRI®) – TBRI® is the leading intervention for a therapist to be trained in if they are working with children with histories of trauma.  Currently there are 8,000 children in foster care in Oklahoma and 21,000 who have been adopted through DHS.  Not to mention all the children who are living in vulnerable households.  TBRI® was created at the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development at Texas Christian University.  To attend the training at TCU, it costs $3500 per person.  HALO Project is considered a partner of the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development and has special permission to train TBRI® in one and two-day trainings in the state of Oklahoma.  There are only 4 other partners of the Institute in the country able to train at this level, all of which are outside of the state of Oklahoma.

Making Sense of Your Worth – This intervention was created by HALO Project and serves as an 8-week group format intervention designed to meet the mental health needs of adults.  The program has the ability to bring healing to individuals who have trauma in their past so they can be healthy adults for their children.  It is being utilized world-wide and is an efficient way to provide successful therapy in a short amount of time.   It has been described as “a life-changing intervention that replaces years of therapy.”  The cost for a therapist to attend this training is generally $710 per person.

Internal Family Systems Therapy – This modality is utilized to bring an individual to healing quickly and is an excellent intervention for those “stuck” in therapy or those who have been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  To be fully trained in this intervention will cost a therapist around $3500.   HALO employs a therapist who has developed a training in this intervention for a fraction of the cost.

 

For years we have been searching for best-practices and have found the three interventions above to be the most valuable in helping a child, adult and/or family achieve healing in the most efficient fashion.

Through the Collaborative Impact Project, HALO and Impact Oklahoma would be able to train 65 professionals in the above interventions for $1500 per professional (valued at $7710 per person.) This would build a mental health army of highly trained professionals with the ability to meet the mental health needs of our communities.

Professionals would be chosen through our partner organizations as well as other professionals in our communities.  They would apply and be selected based on their need for the interventions, their potential impact, and the populations they serve.   During the course of the upcoming year, they would be trained in the above-mentioned interventions.  Those selected would participate in monthly consultation calls and be asked to track data on the number of people served as well as length of time in therapy and overall outcomes.  This will allow us gather measurable data to show the overall success of the project.

 

The Impact:

If each therapist serves an average of 50-60 children and families per year individually (30 at any given time for an average of 6 month of care) then the impact would be healing for 3900 Oklahoma families in the first year.  These interventions are also designed for group work.  If each therapist also ran 2 groups of 10 people each this number would increase to 5,200 in the first year.  Utilizing these same numbers in the second year the total would be 10,400 and in the third year, 15,600 and so on.   This investment has a continued impact from year to year.

 

Final Thoughts:

HALO is addressing this particular issue because we see the increased need for quality mental health services in our state.  We witness the suffering every day and having so many families on the waitlist asking for help is daunting.  It is especially daunting when we have a solution but lack manpower.  We know with the Collaborative Impact Project this large number of professionals can help meet the mental health needs of our communities.

Our kids are being harmed at the highest rate in the nation and the Impact Oklahoma Grant will change this.  From our hearts to yours, we thank you.