PIQUA — SafeHaven Inc. celebrated the agency’s 25th anniversary on Monday with an invitation-only event due to current state mandates.
During the event SafeHaven staff unveiled their 25th anniversary shirts and motto, “Grateful for 25 … Grateful to be Alive.”
Since April 1996, SafeHaven has provided mental health services to adults in Darke, Miami, and Shelby counties.
“We are very grateful for all of the community support we have been blessed with for these first 25 years, as a contract agency of the Tri-County Board of Recovery and Mental Health Services, as a partner agency of The United Way, as a caring heart to everyone we’ve ever known with mental illness, and as your community neighbor,” said executive director Douglas Metcalfe. “We are blessed to have the opportunity to be a little bit of God’s hands and feet each day.
SafeHaven, as a 501c3 non-profit agency, provides educational, social, and vocational support services to adults in the tri-county area in need of mental health support in a safe, non-judgmental environment. With locations in Greenville, Piqua and Sidney, SafeHaven provides a structured day of educational classes and support groups, meals, fun activities, transportation, field trips, holiday and special events, after-hours HOPE-Line, and organizational payeeship, according to Metcalfe. Most staff are consumers with their own journey with mental illness, he said.
“All services are free, and everyone that walks through our doors is considered family,” Metcalfe said.
There were many transitions in the first years leading to an opportunity for growth and a permanent location for the Miami County site. The move from rented space in Troy to a permanent 7,000-square-foot location in Piqua created the opportunity for members and the board of directors to dream big for future expansion projects in Darke and Shelby counties, according to Metcalfe. The purchase of the Piqua location was made possible by a capital grant from the Tri-County ADAMHS board and local levy funding. Some of the original members and staff still support SafeHaven events and activities 25 years later. In 1996, according to Metcalfe, the power of peer-led agencies and boards was just blooming – SafeHaven has served as a model for many other communities to invest in peer-led agencies.
SafeHaven began renting in Darke County in 2002, around the time organizational payeeship was started to serve the tri-county area. Rental turned into purchase of a Greenville property with another capital grant in 2008. Shelby County received its own SafeHaven location in Sidney in 2011. HOPE-Line services began in 2012.
“Meals served, groups taught, miles driven and checks cut add up to almost 1 million … but the number that matters is every one person that comes in for help,” Metcalfe said.
Learn more at www.safehaveninc.com, or by calling SafeHaven at 937-548-7233 (Darke County), 937-615-0126 (Miami County), or 937-658-6930 (Shelby County). The organizational payee program can be reached at 937-615-9506. Warmline support is available through the HOPE-Line from 4-11 p.m. Monday-Friday and 4-8 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays at 937-451-3232 or toll-free at 855-276-HOPE.