New program called ’Show Me Hope’ offers help for anxieties created by COVID-19 pandemic

Help for dealing with COVID-19 stress

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - There’s not a true vaccine for stress, but there are local counselors available to help our neighbors better cope with the anxieties created by the pandemic.

At the Gibson Center in Cape Girardeau, anyone dealing with stress because of Covid-19 can get help.

Chief operating officer Ryan Essex said it’s called Show Me Hope.

“The hope is that we’re able to reduce their stress by providing them some coping skills,” he said.

He explained why this can help.

“There is a higher stress level associated with living right now in uncertain times as it relates to the pandemic,” he said.

The FEMA-funded program provides free counseling services by phone or virtually.

“We’ll have a counselor on the other end of the line who will gather brief information,” Essex said. “It’s completely anonymous. We won’t ask a person’s name.”

The Community Counseling Center in Cape Girardeau also has a key role. Kyle Schott is the program manager at their center.

“We’ll focus more on the mental health needs,” he said.

For example, Schott said this could be signs of anxiety or depression linked to COVID-19. He said one tool they use to help those eliminate stress is education.

“If we understand and have knowledge and education about what we don’t know sometimes, then we’re better able to cope,” he said.

Schott said it’s better to learn how to cope with these issues now rather than later.

“Overall, I think what the goal is of this is that the long lasting effects of dealing with the Pandemic from a mental and psychological isn’t as damaging,” he said.

For help you can reach out to the “Show Me Hope” helpline at 573-334-110 or the Disaster Distress Hotline at 1-1800-985-5990/ Text “TalkWithUs” to 66746.

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