The problems facing our community are increasingly complex and require evidence-based solutions to provide real, long-lasting change. United Way of Story County is a strategic leader in building county-wide partnerships. The relationships we have with partner agencies, businesses, community members and experts outside of the area means United Way of Story County is in a unique position to identify needs and to develop, support and evaluate effective human services. This calls for a focus in three key areas: education, income and health
HEALTH: How United Way of Story County Helps
United Way of Story County prides itself on working to create affordable/accessible essential services for healthy lives. This includes mental health care. Like most mid-west communities, Story County has an insufficient supply of psychiatric and substance abuse services to support people in recovery from those illnesses. In the 2010 needs assessment study, almost 20% of Story County residents reported having had two or more years in their lives when they felt depressed or sad on most days. Almost 9% reported they had been diagnosed with major depression by a physician at some point in their lives.
United Way of Story County is collaborating with local mental health professionals to address the growing needs. The Story County Mental Health Criminal Justice Task Force, composed of individuals from across mental health, law enforcement and other community organizations, is working to improve the system-wide response to mentally ill individuals.
The task force’s vision is to bring about increased awareness and recognition of the mentally ill to ensure people receive the services they need, to provide better transitions and to ensure compliance with case plans and to address crisis situations more effectively and efficiently. To learn more about the task force, contact Deb Schildroth, director of Story County community services.
United Way of Story County took the lead on exploring the possibility of establishing a Wellness Center where people with mental illness could go for socialization, educational programs and activities. Through UWSC Endowment funds, a pilot program began in August 2011. The Mental Health Wellness Center, operated through NAMI, has been very successful. Because of the tremendous success, ASSET funders now support the Wellness Center through annual allocations.
Pay less for prescriptions!
United Way of Story County has partnered with FamilyWize to bring a free prescription discount card to Story County. The card is really just like a reusable prescription coupon on all FDA approved medicines. Anyone in your family, your work or your neighborhood can immediately use it. You can even use it if you have health insurance, both during deductible periods and for anything your insurance doesn't cover. Simply stop by our office (315 Clark Ave. in Ames) and pick one up, or downloaded a printable card online!
Participating pharmacies in Story County include: Hy-Vee Drugstore, Hy-Vee Drugstore Clinic (in McFarland), Hy-Vee Lincoln Center, Hy-Vee West, ISU Thielen Student Health Center, Medicap, Nucara, Target, both Wal-Marts and Walgreens in Ames; Hy-Vee Clinic in Huxley; Nucara, Park View Health Mart and Story County Hospital in Nevada; Nucara in Story City; Zearing Medical Clinic in Zearing.
Creating opportunities for healthy smiles
Another important aspect of United Way of Story County’s work in the area of health is access to dental care. United Way of Story County financially supports the work of the Story County Dental Clinic, where up to 30 patients are seen a day. This important community asset is highlighted on the 2013 LIVE UNITED campaign video.
Partners in health: American Red Cross - Lincoln Way Chapter, The Arc of Story County, Assault Care Center (ACCESS), Eyerly Ball, Heartland Senior Services (HSS), HOMEWARD and HOMEWARD Hospice, Hunger Collaboration, Mainstream Living, Mid-Iowa Community Action, Inc., NAMI Central Iowa (National Alliance on Mental Illness), Youth & Shelter Services, Inc. (YSS)