The Child Mind Institute provides resources for Talking to Kids About the Coronavirus.
Illustrated Ministry has provided free coloring pages with Prayers When You Feel Anxious. These are a great tool to help have conversations with children (and adults) about their fears and worries in these difficult days.
The Presbyterian Mission Agency has compiled a list of Mental Health Resources for children and adults as well.
Rev. Lisa Schrott, Associate Pastor of First Presbyterian Church on Hilton Head Island shared the following message with her congregation and gave us permission to share here as well. She provides many great resources.
On Monday I had one of those moments where the reality of the COVID-19 outbreak hit me hard. The reality of what we are facing swept over me, and I was overwhelmed by the depth. I needed the assurance of comfort from God. Maybe you have had a moment or two like that over the last two weeks, or maybe you will as the weeks of physical distancing stretch on. You are not alone.
As news reports and social media surround us, we will inevitably have moments of anxiety, fear, and despair. Our stress systems are on overload as our daily routines have been completely upended. Just as we need to take care of our physical health during this outbreak, we also need to attend to our emotional and mental health.
Mental Health America has collated resources for responding to this outbreak, with a focus on mental and emotional health. Click on the topics below to learn more:
- General Mental Health Information During Disease Outbreaks
- Financial Support
- Tools and Information on Anxiety
- Tools to Connect With Others
- Crisis Helplines
- For Parents
- For Caregivers
- For Older Adults
- For Domestic Violence Survivors
For individuals coping with any kind of health condition, the stress of the COVID-19 outbreak is more than just an inconvenience. And if you are one of the tens of millions of Americans with a condition affecting your brain, the ability to cope with this increased stress, anxiety, and isolation may be even more challenging.
- The National Alliance on Mental Illness has provided this helpful information for those who are experiencing anxiety because of the coronavirus.
- To find a support group, visit the NAMI Resource Library. It provides an extensive list of in-person and online support groups, and other mental health resources.
- Contact the SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline (800) 985-5990. It provides 24 hours per day, 365 days a year crisis counseling and support to people experiencing emotional distress related to natural or human-caused disasters.
- See also Taking Care of Your Emotional Health from the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
What if I need help?
Reach out to someone. Call a neighbor, call a family member, call a pastor, or call a friend.
The South Carolina Department of Mental Health provides Community Crisis Response and Intervention (CCRI). The CCRI provides on-site emergency psychiatric screening and assessment to individuals experiencing mental health emergencies within 60 minutes of contact. The service is available 24 hours per day, 365 days a year. The phone number is 833-364-2274.
Suicide affects people of all ages and walks of life. Help is available! If you are in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741. Learn more at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention at https://afsp.org/find-support/
The State of South Carolina is in the process of setting up a new Virtual Crisis Counseling Program to help those struggling with stress and anxiety related to COVID-19. The goal is to connect people with specific resources. The program should be up and running soon and I’ll provide updated information as it comes on-line.
My prayer for you today is that you remember that you are never alone. No matter how long we are physically separated from each other, we are connected through the love and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Of the places we interact in the world, the church is a place where we are able to share our whole selves. Paul reminds us in 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 we have been comforted by God so that we comfort others. The prophet Isaiah preaches a word of comfort to the exiles. Let us comfort each other. Let us support each other. Let us be honest with each other about our struggles. Let us be the light of Christ in this world.
Grace and peace,