Jackson Care Connect supports new level of mental health services in Jackson County

Compass House, a new nonprofit facility that helps people with mental illness reenter
the community, will hold a Meet and Greet from 5 to 7 p.m., March 20, at
the Carnegie Library in Medford. Those who attend will enjoy food, enter a raffle
and learn about the program.

For people who have mental health issues, ordinary tasks like getting up, taking
a shower or going grocery shopping can seem overwhelming. For many, it’s a
barrier that can keep them from finding jobs, going to school and being part of
the community.

“Compass House provides a social safety net,” said Matt Vorderstrasse,
Compass House representative. “It is a place where people will feel welcome,
working side-by-side with staff in their daily activities.”

Based on a international model called The Clubhouse, Compass House
members work as colleagues and manage all operations of the facility, giving
them an opportunity to contribute in significant and meaningful ways. The
environment is one of support, acceptance and commitment to the potential
contributions of each member, and can help people with mental illness stay out of
the hospital.

The program received wide community support, including Jackson County
Mental Health, United Way, NAMI and elected state officials, such as Rep. Peter
Buckley and Rep. Dennis Richardson, and Medford Mayor Gary Wheeler. Local
Coordinated Care Organizations, Jackson Care Connect and AllCare endorse
the program.

Compass House will offer an array of services. Members can take advantage of
daytime programs at the center, vocational rehabilitation and employment
services, housing support services, case management, social and recreational
programs, supported education and crisis support [or intervention].
Compass House is hoping to find donated items that can go into their new space.
Those with suggestions should please contact Matt Vorderstrasse at 541-973-

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