A substantial privately funded grant to a local mental health and substance abuse treatment organization will fund a major renovation project which, when completed, will significantly increase the number of children and adolescents served in the Ardmore area.

Robert Lee, executive director of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Centers of Southern Oklahoma, announced the Southern Oklahoma Memorial Foundation recently awarded a $500,000 grant to his agency. MHSACSO provides mental health and substance abuse treatment to more than 5,000 children, adolescents and adults in Carter, Love, Marshall, Garvin, Johnston, Murray, Bryan, Seminole and Pontotoc counties. MHSACSO’s grant proposal indicates that the agency’s greatest need is providing additional children’s services.

“They were very generous,” Lee said. “This is huge for us.”
MHSACSO’s Ardmore clinic is the largest in the nine-county service area. The agency plans to hire additional staff once the renovations are completed, which will result in doubling the number of children and youth served. The project will increase the number of clinician offices, provide a room for group therapy, expand the waiting area, modify the bathrooms to meet ADA standards and better insulate the clinic so it is more energy-efficient. The grant will also fund new heating and air conditioning equipment in both the administration and adult substance abuse residential treatment buildings.

“The first priority of Southern Oklahoma Memorial Foundation is to consider the health care needs of South Central Oklahoma,” SOMF President Larry Pulliam said. “The Foundation recognizes that mental health programs, while an important part of overall health care needs, are often underfunded. The Foundation has confidence in the management and programs of the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Centers of Southern Oklahoma and are happy to partner with them in this endeavor.”
Steve Biehn, 221-6546