CHATTANOOGA, TN – APRIL 2016 – This spring, the Richmont Community Counseling Center (RCCC) will celebrate ten years of operation. In 2006 with Dr. Jana Pressley at the helm, the RCCC opened its doors with the goal of bringing subsidized mental healthcare services to underserved populations in our city. Michelle Shelley, who became the Director of the RCCC after Pressley moved out of state, has continued and expanded the vision. The RCCC is now the foremost provider of reduced-fee, bilingual services in the region.
“Richmont takes seriously the call of Christ to serve the hurting and bring them hope. The RCCC has been a major part of our work in this arena, and we are grateful to the therapists and interns that serve clients in need,” says President Bob Rodgers.
Last year the RCCC provided 1,786 counseling sessions, more than half of which served uninsured clients, with the others reaching clients with an annual household income of under $15,000. Furthermore, a full 13% of clients specify English as their second language, giving rise to the need for bilingual counseling. The RCCC is positioned to meet this need with a full-time, licensed bilingual therapist.
“It remains an immense privilege for Richmont to offer access to services that many people could otherwise not afford. Thanks to many individual donors, clients are regularly surprised at how the RCCC is able to extend grace regarding payments for services,” says Director Michelle Shelley, LMFT.
One of the highlights of the past year was the RCCC’s training of its interns in Parent-Child Interaction Therapy, an evidence-based practice designed to improve the health of children ages 2-7 by addressing the relationship between parent and child. This was the second year in which RCCC therapists were able to train interns in this model, and they look forward to continuing the practice in the future. Additionally, the RCCC’s bilingual therapist, Rebeca Durand, built and strengthened a number of partnerships around the metro Chattanooga area to better serve the Latino population. Notable community partners now include Clínica Médicos, La Paz, and a number of area Catholic churches.
The RCCC anticipates a second decade of growing, expanding, and loving Chattanoogans who need a hand up as they confront the challenges of life.