Actions

Crisis Center of Tampa Bay sees increase in calls during pandemic, urges veterans to seek help

Crisis Center Tampa Bay
Posted at 6:13 AM, Nov 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-11 06:13:11-05

TAMPA, Fla. — The Crisis Center of Tampa Bay is working to give people the resources they need with any kind of challenge they may be facing.

“We have access to over 2,000 different community resources that are available to help individuals across our community with any kind of life challenge that they might be having. Whether it’s food, clothing, shelter, child development related issues, behavioral health related issues,” said Clara Reynolds, President & CEO of Crisis Center Tampa Bay.

The Crisis Center started tracking calls relating to COVID-19 around the beginning of the pandemic.

“What started off as just a handful of calls, exploded at the end of March, beginning of April with individuals across our community who are struggling with rent and utilities and how am I going to teach my kid and I just lost my job and all of those related stressors,” said Reynolds.

The organization says those calls have continued over the past seven months and workers have also received calls relating to suicidal thoughts.

They’ve found most people are really struggling with mental health issues like severe depression and anxiety.

The Crisis Center of Tampa Bay also has a special focus on veterans in the area, their day-to-day struggles, and how the pandemic has affected them.

“We knew many unfortunately were considering taking their lives and we were losing as a country, 22 veterans a day to suicide,” said Reynolds.

The group says right now local veterans are struggling with homelessness.

Many people have lost their jobs and haven’t been able to get the medical care they need.

“We’ve got many veterans that are transitioning into the state of Florida. We’ve heard about this influx from the northeast where we’ve got a lot more veterans entering into our state and they’re looking for resources and support,” said Reynolds.

Here’s how you can get help:

  • For anyone in a crisis, call 211 any time, any day.
  • For veterans call 1-844-693-5838. Veterans or family members can call and will be connected to other veterans who have experienced many of the same issues.

“We want all of our veterans to know that the Crisis Center is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to provide you and your family members any type of help and support that you might need during this time,” said Reynolds.

Leaders say they want veterans to know they’re always available to help.

“Veteran’s Day while it is a time for us to honor and celebrate our Veteran’s, for many of the veterans who call us, it is also a time of great reflection and anxiety and depression for thinking about their brothers and sisters that they might have lost during combat,” said Reynolds.