ARROW opens up drop-in counseling sessions

Published: Sep. 5, 2022 at 10:53 AM EDT
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STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) - An organization in Staunton will open their doors three days a week to drop-in, informal outpatient counseling sessions.

The ARROW (Augusta Resources for Resilience, Opportunity and Wellness) Project is a grassroots mental health organization with the goal of removing barriers to mental health care.

Katie Dolieslager, Resident in Counseling and Communications Director for the ARROW Project, said the drop-in hours further that goal.

“It’s just a hope that people would know that someone in the community is there for them and can listen to them and process anything that might be going on with them,” said Dolieslager.

You do not have to be a client at the ARROW Project to take advantage of the new program. Each session is 15 minutes, but you can sign up for two slots back-to-back. The sessions are also completely free and offered three days a week.

“We realized our community really would benefit from having more access and really that’s our biggest hope of what arrow is, giving more access and knocking down that barrier and helping people have support in the community,” she said.

Dolieslager said drop-in hours can serve any purpose: to vent or even to celebrate.

“I think sometimes the joy of life isn’t talked about enough in mental health counseling. Even if someone just has something going on and they’re like you know, I just really want to talk to someone about this, having someone there to just listen and be a support for them,” she said.

Drop-ins aren’t formal counseling, but sometimes that’s not what someone needs.

“This idea of people feeling alone or isolated or overwhelmed with the state of the world, so having someone there to help you process that and walk through it so that you can leave the space with a clearer head than when you walked into it,” she said.

Dolieslager said you can also use the slot to find community resources for mental health.

You can sign up for a drop-in session on their website. The link is also available on Facebook. Drop-in appointments are available on Wednesdays and Fridays, 6-8 p.m. and Saturdays, 1-3 p.m.

For more on the ARROW Project, visit their website.