The Locust Street Resource Center began operations in August of 1974 as the Macoupin County Mental Health Center for the purpose of providing mental health services to adults and children in Macoupin County. The agency came into being through the efforts of a dedicated group of Macoupin County residents who recognized the need to have mental health services available in the County. It was their hard work which lead to the passing of a county referendum that created the initial funding for the agency.
Located on the square in Carlinville for much of its history, the agency began its second year of operation with 5 full-time staff and a tight budget. But this was a time of growth for the mental health field in Illinois and additional programs were soon to be added. During the late 1970’s services for children were expanded, a drug and alcohol program was funded, crisis intervention services were initiated, as was an alcoholism education/prevention program. In the 1980’s residential and day treatment programs were added to assist individuals with mental illness live successfully in the community. Family Support Services and a Residential Program for individuals with developmental disabilities were implemented in the mid-80’s, crisis beds were added to the mental health residential program, the Birth-to-Three Program, Farm Crisis Services and a Alzheimer’s Support Group were all formed during this decade as well. The 1990’s saw tighter fiscal times and growth was slower. Still the agency opened a Community Integrated Living Arrangement (CILA) residential facility and added our Elder Abuse and Neglect Program. But possibly the two most significant achievements during this time were the agency becoming certified to provide Medicaid services and becoming accredited through the Council on Accreditation.
The past 12 years have been a time of great change – both for the agency itself and for the behavioral health field in general. During this time the agency experienced a change in leadership and engaged in 2 major construction projects. In 2002 the agency constructed a comfortable and accessible 10-bed residential facility in Carlinville for individuals with mental illness. 8 beds are geared for individuals transitioning to living independently in the community and 2 beds are designated as short-term crisis beds. Then in September of 2005 the agency moved from its original outdated location on the square in Carlinville to its new facility on Locust Street. While an ambitious project, the new 28,000 square foot facility has created accessible and inviting space for our consumers and our staff, as well as allowing for growth and program expansion. At the time of the move, it was decided that the Macoupin County Mental Health Center name did not accurately reflect all that we did. By this date, the agency was providing services in multiple counties in central Illinois and was funded for more than just mental health programs. The new Locust Street Resource Center name was chosen to reflect our vision to be a one-stop resource to individuals in and around Macoupin County for a wide range of behavioral health services and supports.
The 2000’s brought new programs in addition to the new facilities. Our Screening, Assessment and Support Services Program (SASS) was funded to provide more intensive services in a 5-county area, Youth Substance Abuse services were added, a Youth Transition Program was implemented and the evidence-based Individual Placement and Support program (IPS) became the model to assist individuals with mental illness gain and maintain competitive employment. The availability of psychiatric appointments was significantly increased and a board-certified child psychiatrist was hired part-time to meet the needs of youth and families. Our Caregiver and Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Programs were also added in the past few years. In the fall of 2010, the Locust Street Resource Center was awarded funding to provide mental health services in neighboring Greene County following the closure of Tri-County Counseling Center in Jerseyville. Most recently, in partnership with DCFS the agency opened a Children’s Advocacy Center to support child victims of alleged sexual abuse or serious physical abuse. This decade has been an era that has promoted the implementation of recovery-based services and the increased use of research-supported treatment models. But it has also been a time of fiscal struggle for the State of Illinois which has resulted in significant reductions in funding for programs and services over the past several years.
Yet today the Locust Street Resource Center continues its mission to provide high-quality and responsive behavioral health services to area residents. Now with nearly 60 employees and a budget of 2.5 million dollars the agency serves over 2,600 unduplicated consumers per year in one of our 16 programs or services. We will continue to grow and improve with changes in the field as we remain committed as ever to be there when you need us!