The Beaufort County School District has partnered with a Bluffton business to launch an initiative that offers discounted counseling services to employees and their families amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The program, #YouMatterBCSD, will offer mental health support including group counseling and individual sessions with licensed counselors from Hope Performance Systems at 262 Red Cedar St., in Bluffton.
Starting this week, district employees can attend a series of free in-person or online peer group sessions to introduce the program, a news release said.
“Whether we’re talking about teachers or administrators or school staff or bus drivers, our employees’ jobs can be stressful even in the best of times,” superintendent Frank Rodriguez said. “The pressures of working during a pandemic have placed additional stressors on our employees and their families.”
The district said individual services would be available for anxiety, depression, substance abuse, marriage counseling, adolescent and child family counseling, life coaching, nutrition and wellness counseling and play therapy.
Group sessions include grief, eating disorders, substance abuse, trauma stress, anger management and parenting skills.
“While the district is providing peer group counseling sessions to staff at no cost, staff members seeking additional services have the option to utilize their health insurance provider or the discounted cash rate, created just for Beaufort County School District employees,” the release said.
“Additional integrative health care options include: chiropractic care, physical therapy, dietetic counseling, acupuncture, individual personal training and virtual gym memberships.”
Alice Walton, the district’s chief administrative services and human resources officer, said the district hopes to improve the physical and emotional health of its employees, and #YouMatterBCSD will be the first in a series of new initiatives.
“Our goal is to make the Beaufort County School District the best place to work in South Carolina,” Walton said. “Healthy, happy and productive district employees will help us support healthy, happy and productive students and their families.”
The district said counseling programs can be accessed by employees and family members at any time at sites throughout the county. The district will announce additional #YouMatterBCSD services in “the near future,” the release said.