It’s impossible to talk about the mental health system in North Carolina without also discussing substance abuse and how the opioid crisis is impacting resources within the system.
Congressmen Mark Meadows, R-Asheville, and Jim Renacci, R-Ohio, introduced the Opioid Abuse Deterrence, Research and Recovery Act last week with hopes of tackling opioid addiction at the source.
At some point roughly 20 years ago, a shipment from Asia arrived in the United States with a passel of six-legged stowaways lurking in its wooden pallets. Since it was first detected near Detroit in 2002, the emerald ash borer has gnawed its way through ash trees across North America, leaving a swath of destruction across 31 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces — and counting.
The EAB was first spotted in North Carolina in 2013, when it was confirmed in Granville, Person, Vance and Warren counties, a contiguous area in the central part of the state bordering Virginia. Now it’s present in 33 of the state’s 100 counties and continues to spread. WNC counties with confirmed ash borer infestations are Haywood, Swain, Macon, Graham, Buncombe, Madison, Mitchell and Yancey counties — this month, the N.C. Forest Service found EAB on several trees in the Alarka area of Swain County after the beetle was initially found in Bryson City last summer.
An oral history project documenting African American history in the far western reaches of North Carolina is now a book, thanks to Waynesville’s Pigeon Community Multicultural Development Center.
“I guess the motivation was because Haywood County just doesn’t have very much documented history of African Americans,” said Lyn Forney, the director of the Pigeon Center.
Asking for help is often the hardest step in the recovery process. Even after realizing you need help, it can be difficult to identify the problem and navigate your way through the mental health system.
Despite funding cuts from the state and Vaya Health, Meridian is working hard to make sure the programs for domestic violence and sexual abuse offenders stay viable.
Haywood County native Robert Guinn leads a fairly normal life these days. He has a good attitude, a fulfilling job, a good circle of friends and loves bragging on his 14-year-old daughter.
A major fundraising campaign is a significant undertaking for any nonprofit organization, but it’s especially difficult when an organization has to split its time between providing behavioral health services in seven western counties and trying to come up with enough funding to keep its programming.
After battling brain cancer since April 2016, Western Carolina University Chancellor David O. Belcher announced Nov. 27 that his treatment is no longer working. He will go on medical leave and does not expect to return to his position.
It seems the holiday shopping season comes sooner and sooner every year. Before the turkey has even cooled people are lined up outside the big box retailers waiting for their chance to snag the best deals of the season.