Closing the gap and making mental and physical healthcare accessible to students in the South Oak Cliff High School feeder pattern is what the district strives to accomplish with the addition of the new T.D. Marshall Youth and Family Center at Clara Oliver. The facility is scheduled to open next month and have an official ribbon cutting on Sept. 26.
“The T.D. Marshall Youth and Family Center will fill in a huge gap in the southern sector of town where mental and physical healthcare services are minimal, and we are looking forward to providing these services to our students and families in this area,” said Tracey Brown, executive director of the district’s Mental Health Services Department.
Brown said the two targets of mental and physical health often cause barriers for students.
“The district’s new youth and family center will remove barriers, which then opens the door of opportunity,” Brown said. “There’s so many things that our kids are going through, and our therapists and our medical partners are there to help and support.”
The new clinic will primarily serve students from 4 to 21 years of age and offer primary care health as well as mental health services. Several Youth and Family Centers have new physical health partners, and T.D. Marshall YFC has partnered with Los Barrios Unidos Community Clinic to offer physical health services.
Immunizations and sports physicals are among some of the most in-demand physical health services available at the centers.
Individual counseling, group counseling, family counseling, evaluation and assessment, psychiatric consultation and medication management, as well as parent education workshops, are among the mental health services that will be offered.
“If you have someone that’s walking the walk with you, and there’s a therapist that can listen and that can support you, it can make all the difference to a student and their family,” Brown said.
As part of the mental health services offered to students, Brown also notes that campuses throughout the district have mental health clinicians that can offer short-term counseling and behavior interventions.
According to Brown, a community health-needs assessment conducted in 2019 showed the need for additional services in the 75216 zip code, which led to the T.D. Marshall YFC. Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief funds were used to renovate the existing building where the clinic will be housed.
As the district prepares to open the T.D. Marshall YFC, the Mental Health Services Department will be working with schools in the South Oak Cliff feeder pattern to let teachers, parents, and the community know about the services they will be offering.
For more information on T.D. Marshall YFC and the 12 other clinics located throughout the district visit www.dallasisd.org/mentalhealth or call the Mental Health Services Department at 972-502-4190.