Mental Health First Aid trainer excited about new role

Emily Farley Mental Health First Aid

Julia Gaughan was looking on the Bert Nash Center website for information about upcoming dates for Mental Health First Aid classes when something caught her eye. A job listing for a new position — Mental Health First Aid training supervisor. “I read through the job description and I thought, I don’t have all of those qualifications,” Gaughan said. But the …

Peer support specialist uses her own experiences to help others

Emily Farley Peer Support

In her role as a peer support specialist at the Bert Nash Center, when Annie Ross is working with a client who is struggling or going through a crisis, she can relate. Because she’s been there herself. Ross, who has bipolar disorder, has struggled with mental illness since she was a teen. “I went through years of ups and downs …

Julia Gaughan had a plan. A plan for how she would die.

Emily Farley Adult Services

It was December 2015. She planned to drive her car off the road on her way to work in Topeka in an apparent accident. She would wait until after the holidays so she could spend the time with her husband, Mike, and son, Kiernan, who was 7 at the time. But on Dec. 21, the day before her birthday, Julia, …

DBT was a turning point

Emily Farley Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

In the summer of 2016, Vincent Weston was struggling with psychotic symptoms and self-harm and knew he needed help, but didn’t know where to turn. He finally decided to talk to his parents. “They sent me to every doctor they could find, basically,” Vincent said. “Finally, someone I saw recommended the DBT (dialectical behavior therapy) program at Bert Nash, so …

Getting help is a way to live up to your full potential

Emily Farley Adult Services, WRAP

Rachel Monger met David Johnson, former Bert Nash CEO, several years ago at an advocacy fellowship program they both participated in through the Sunflower Foundation. She went up to him afterward and told him that Bert Nash was there for her when she needed it, and if there was anything she could do for the Center, to let her know. …

An absolute joy to see the center grow

Emily Farley News & Notes

Alice Ann Johnston and her young family were fairly new to Lawrence when a friend asked her if she would be interested in serving on the board at the Bert Nash Center. “We had moved here in 1983,” Johnston said. “I hadn’t even heard of Bert Nash before.” But she said yes to the invitation to join the board anyway. …

A personal story: Taking a stand for a cause he believes in

Emily Farley News & Notes

For Paul Williams, the ballot issue to finance the jail remodeling as well as numerous mental health initiatives, including a crisis center, has taken him out of his comfort zone. Admittedly, Williams has an aversion to conflict. He’s also not been one to engage in political debate. Until now. “I’ve never been a political kind of guy,” Williams said. “I …

Running the race at your own pace

Emily Farley Adult Services

There is no actual running involved, but the Illness Management Recovery (IMR) group at Bert Nash is a lot like training for a long-distance race. “We use the example of running a marathon,” said co-leader Kendra Powers. “We would be able to run a marathon if we trained for it, but we couldn’t just get up today and go run …

New program will focus on urgent care

Emily Farley Adult Services

Since graduating with a psychology degree from the University of Kansas in 1995, Nicole Rials has had a strong interest in crisis-related programs. She also loves collaboration between community partners. Her new position — director of the Urgent Care Program at the Bert Nash Center — affords her the chance to be involved with both. “I’ve always been very interested …