Texas Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner Charles Smith announced that Texas has approved up to $10 million in grants to help Texas veterans and their families manage mental health issues. Fourteen community groups across the state will receive the grants.

“We need to take care of veterans, who put their lives on the line to protect our freedoms,” Commissioner Smith said. “This grant program offers innovative ways to address the mental health needs of our veterans and their families. We must do whatever it takes to help these Texas heroes.”

The funds, awarded as part of HHSC’s Texas Veterans + Family Alliance grant program, help improve quality of life for Texas veterans and their families by increasing access to mental health treatment and services.

State Sen. Jane Nelson’s Senate Bill 55 established the program, which provides up to $20 million in state funds over the 2016-2017 biennium to be matched with local and private funds by the grantees. This is the first of two anticipated rounds of up to $10 million in grants expected to be announced as part of the program. A $1 million state-funded pilot effort, with community match, began this summer in five locations in Texas.

“Our veterans deserve the very best, and I’m proud that Texas communities have responded to our call for local solutions to help our fighting men and women,” Sen. Nelson said. “These projects will help veterans struggling with mental health challenges and assist the families and loved ones of those veterans.”

The following organizations, projected to serve nearly 15,000 veterans and family members with grant-supported services, have been selected. Final contract amounts are being negotiated.

Heroes Night Out – proposing to serve Bastrop, Bell, Caldwell, Coryell, Hays, Lampasas, Travis and Williamson counties

Veterans Coalition of North Central Texas – proposing to serve Bell, Collin, Coryell, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Erath, Hood, Hunt, Johnson, Kaufman, Navarro, Palo Pinto, Parker, Rockwall, Somervall, Tarrant and Wise counties

Equest – proposing to serve Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Fannin, Grayson, Hunt, Kaufman, Rockwall, Tarrant and Van Zandt counties

Heart of Texas Regional Mental Health and Mental Retardation Center – proposing to serve Bosque, Falls, Freestone, Hill, Limestone and McLennan counties

Catholic Charities of Fort Worth – proposing to serve Archer, Baylor, Dallas, Denton, Foard, Hood, Johnson, Knox, Montague, Parker, Tarrant and Wichita counties

Tropical Texas Behavioral Health – proposing to serve Hidalgo County

West Texas Counseling & Guidance – proposing to serve Coke, Concho, Crockett, Irion, Kimble, Mason, McCulloch, Menard, Reagan, Runnels, Schleicher, Sterling, Sutton and Tom Green counties

Easter Seals of Greater Houston – proposing to serve Bell, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, Walker, Waller and Wharton counties

Texoma Community Center – proposing to serve Cooke, Fannin and Grayson counties

Family Endeavors – proposing to serve Brewster, Culberson, El Paso, Hudspeth, Jeff Davis, and Presidio counties

The Ecumenical Center – proposing to serve Bexar County

Headstrong Project – proposing to serve Harris County

StarCare Specialty Health System – proposing to serve Bailey, Borden, Castro, Cochran, Crosby, Dawson, Dickens, Dimmit, Floyd, Garza, Hale, Hockley, Lamb, Lubbock, Lynn, Motley, Parmer, Swisher, Terry and Yoakum counties

Metrocare Services – proposing to serve Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Hood, Hunt, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall, Somervall, Tarrant and Wise counties

Veterans and family members seeking assistance and services should contact grantees in their areas.

For more information about the grant program, click here.

For more information about behavioral health services in Texas, please visit www.MentalHealthTX.org.

For more information about services for Texas veterans, families and their survivors, click here. For immediate assistance, dial 2-1-1 or (800) 252-VETS.

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