Lutheran Family Services, the church says, “has a strong history of providing mental health services to children, families and individuals and will offer outpatient behavioral and mental health counseling” in partnership with the Methodist clinic.Another vision for Kountze Commons is to provide “enrichment through the arts” to youth and families beyond the church.The new clinic as seen from Kountze Memorial Lutheran Church.
“They are vulnerable people who are trying to better their health, and they are so appreciative.”Pete Noriega, 50, waiting for a doctor to look at an infected finger, was effusive.“This place is incredible, and the people are super-friendly,” he said.
The church also has a long relationship with the nonprofit Together Inc., which Kountze helped to establish in the 1970s. But those services will be just a part of what happens when the new structure opens — including behavioral and mental health care.***A key to the entire Kountze Commons project, said the Rev.
Dean Bard, interim senior pastor, was the involvement of Methodist Health System.“Without Methodist and its early buy-in,” he said, “this project would never have gotten started.
And it would have been much poorer without the Lutheran Family Services buy-in later on.”In contrast to the church’s existing clinic and pantry, the two new partners will be full-time five-day-a-week operations.
For years, the Methodist Family Health Clinic was located at the Salvation Army’s Lied Renaissance Center, 36th and Cuming Streets. The Methodist clinic moved to the Lutheran church in February and will lease space at Kountze Commons. Lindsay Northam, the clinic will provide medical services to the uninsured, underinsured and low-income people on a sliding fee scale.