Still Struggling, One Year Later: Mental Health Resources For Those Coping After The Camp Fire

Nov 3, 2019

  

Credit Noah Berger / AP Photo

After a disaster like last year’s Camp Fire, many people struggle with distress, depression and anxiety. These feelings are normal and help is available.

Resources and advice for helping you cope can be found at buttecountyrecovers.org, and below. 

General Advice

Butte County reminds residents that while everyone has different ways of coping, there are some steps to recovery from a disaster or traumatic event that are known to help many people:

  • Talk with someone. Connecting with and talking to others who accept and understand your feelings is the best way to help yourself.

  • Re-establish routines. Get back to doing the things you would normally do every day. This can help you regain a sense of control over your life and reduce anxiety.

  • Know that it’s OK to celebrate successes in the recovery process and have moments of joy even after a trauma. Return to doing things you enjoy as a family and spending time with friends.

If you’re affected in Butte County

One way to find mental health services in Butte County, which are not limited to Camp Fire survivors, is to search the Butte-Glenn 211 community resources database at helpcentral.org. You can browse through the categories or type in keywords to find specific services.

If you are experiencing a mental health crisis or if you were previously being served by Butte County Behavioral Health and need to reconnect to services, call the department’s health access line at 800-334-6622 or 530-891-2810. 

Enloe Behavioral Health provides inpatient psychiatric mental health to help with crisis. Call 530-332-5250, 24/7, for more information.

California HOPE of Butte County: HOPE Counselors meet with fire survivors, facilitate educational and support group meetings and provide support at community events. To set up a meeting, call 530-966-7382 or email calhopebutte@gmail.com.

Chico State students can access counseling support by calling the Counseling and Wellness Center 24/7 at 530-898-6345. Faculty and staff can also utilize 24/7 counseling through the Employee Assistance Program at 1-800-367-7474 or mylifematters.com. The Wildcats Rise Facebook group is a place where campus community members can offer and find support for immediate and long-term needs, such as housing, transportation, textbooks, and other resources. For more information about Chico State Camp Fire recovery resources, visit csuchico.edu/campfire.

This list of trauma-focused therapists in Butte County is from The Therapy Directory, an online website and resource from Pyschology Today that lets you find counselors who practice in your area.  

Northern California Trauma Recovery Network

Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing Therapy: Visit norcal-emdr-trn.weebly.com or call 530-891-6767 

Music Therapy: For survivors and helpers contact Erin Haley at erin@haleymusictherapy.com or 530-228-3483 

Long Term Recovery Group: A social, emotional and wellness resource guide (updated Fridays) campfirelongtermrecovery.org 

Butte County Website: Buttecounty.net/behavioralhealth/campfire 

Find the link under the heading mental health tips — “Tips for Health Care Practitioners and Responders”

Crisis hotlines for people in and out of Butte County

The Disaster Distress Helpline is a 24/7, 365-day-a-year national hotline dedicated to providing immediate crisis counseling for people who are experiencing emotional distress related to any natural or human-caused disaster. This toll-free, multilingual, and confidential crisis support service is available to all residents in the United States and its territories. Stress, anxiety, and other depression-like symptoms are common reactions after a disaster. Call 1.800.985.5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to connect with a trained crisis counselor. 

 

The Trevor Lifeline connects lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning (LGBTQ) young persons to a suicide prevention and counseling phone line with access to trained counselors 24/7.

 

The Friendship Line provides crisis intervention, support and resources for older adults, ages 60 and over, and their family and friends. Call 800.971.0016 to access help.

The North Valley Talk Line provided by Northern Valley Catholic Social Services (NVCSS) is a non-crisis warm line offering peer to peer support, compassionate listening, and county-wide resource referrals. Callers that are in crisis or that are at risk of harm to themselves or others are referred to crisis services. Call 855.582.5554 to access help from 4:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., seven days a week.

Anyone thinking about suicide can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) for help. 

Veterans who are struggling can call the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255 (press 1).

Further Reading

Helping Children After a Natural Disaster: Information for Families and Educators

American Counseling Association Trauma and Disaster Resources

Coping Tips For Traumatic Events and Disasters from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration