Center to lend helping hand to flood victims

By George Niforatos

Amidst the chaos of recent Midwestern floods, the Ben Gordon Center is lending a helping hand to those in need.

The Ben Gordon Center, 12 Health Center Drive in DeKalb, is a community based health care service designed to help people during distressful times.

The not-for-profit agency receives funds from county, state and private sources in order to provide health care to those afflicted with mental health, alcohol and drug dependency, child welfare and other problems.

Dave McMahon, director of public relations for the Ben Gordon Center, said the center is helping victims overcome the traumatic effects of recent Midwestern floods.

“We want to make (flood victims) aware of where they can go for assistance,” McMahon said.

For many people, the flood caused loss of income, crop damage, loss of work, loss of shelter, property damage and bodily injury.

McMahon went on to say people usually can cope well with minor problems, but disasters like the recent floods invariably produce a number of candidates for counseling.

“People can cope well with immediate problems,” he said. “But it’s the long term that they may have difficulty with.”

It is at this time when the Ben Gordon Center and Family Services Agency step in to help.

These agencies provide individual or group counseling to people going through anxiety for virtually any reason. In-person counseling fees charged by the agencies are based entirely on ability to pay.

The Ben Gordon Center and Family Services also provide emergency telephone counseling at 756-4875 and 758-8616 respectively.

After 5 p.m., flood victims are encouraged to use the Crisis Line, which can be accessed by calling 758-6655.

McMahon said the Ben Gordon Center can refer economically desperate flood victims to local government agencies specializing in such support.