LEWIS COUNTY OVERVIEW
Lewis county holds over 80,000 people of which 61% live early and 39% are considered urban. The top three demographics reflect 82% white, 10.6%, Hispanic, and 4% Nathan Native American poverty is a significant issue in Lewis county with 11.6% of residents living in poverty as opposed to 9.8% across Washington. Flooding and storm damage have also impacted the community greatly in the past four years with FEMA involved in addressing six significant incidents displace, and thousands. This along with the pandemic and other social stressors, the risk factors for families in this world community has severely increased, resulting in additional risk factors for youth, such as parental addiction, suicides, and domestic violence. DCYF released information about increase substance exposure of infants, a affected at birth in January 2022. This report noted since 2012 there had been a steady increase in the number of infants who are reported to child welfare as being indicated, a substance exposed (an increase of nearly 300% between 2012 and 2020).
SEE OTHER COMMUNITIES WITH PERINATAL MENTAL HEALTH TASK FORCES
LEWIS COUNTY PERINATAL MENTAL HEALTH TASK FORCE
Family Education and Support Services (FESS) is the recipient of the Perinatal Mental Health Initiative (PMHI) Grant. The PMHI is a partnership between local grant funded organizations, Perinatal Support Washington, and the funder Strengthening Families Washington, a program within the Department of Children, Youth & Families. The PMHI focuses on perinatal mental health capacity building for local communities aimed at increasing awareness of perinatal mental health disorders amongst providers and families, increasing perinatal mental health screening and appropriate referrals, and creating easy pathways for families to access the care they need. Currently, there are 11 funded communities in Washington state. FESS began the PMHI work in Lewis Co in July 2023 and the project will go until June 2024.
FESS strives to inspire healthy child development through the provision of quality family support services. Within FESS is a variety of programs, classes and resources for families including the Parent-Child Assistance Program (PCAP) an award-winning, evidence-informed home visitation case-management model for pregnant and parenting women with substance use disorders. PCAP goals are to help mothers build healthy families and prevent future births of children exposed prenatally to alcohol and drugs.
Our task force consists of dedicated mental health, medical and social service professionals aiding in collaborative efforts to increase community awareness and develop resources to support perinatal mental health in Lewis County. Current members include family nurses, doctors, birthing professionals and doulas, housing case managers, social workers, court officials and mental health care providers.
CONTACT: Taylor Valverde
Lewis County Perinatal Mental Health Task Force
MEETING DATES: May 17th, June 21st
We meet on the third Wednesday of every month from 1-2 pm.