Detroit Stories Episode 18: The Front Lines of Mental Health (PODCAST)

As society recovers from a year of stress and anxiety, Catholic Charities counselors ensure those who seek help are able to find it

(0:17) We meet Lisa Elia, a behavioral health therapist at Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan, who introduces the symptoms of grief and loss that many teens and young adults have exhibited throughout the stretch of the pandemic.

(3:27) We learn more about the state of mental health across the nation before the onset of COVID-19, and how mental health care providers on the front lines of the pandemic are struggling to avoid burnout themselves.

(4:21) Lisa discusses the collective trauma people have experienced, with depression and anxiety spiking across all ages and demographics. She stresses the need to examine society in terms of trauma response and to refocus the way we think individually.

(7:24) Jackie Smith, clinical director at Catholic Charities, talks about how her team of therapists has seen a 30 percent increase in clients during the pandemic. She talks, too, about the need for new habits and routines to aid stability.

(8:44) Lisa shares her belief that many people have turned back to faith during these difficulties, and emphasizes that the pandemic has changed the way we turn to our own support systems and increase mindfulness in our lives.

(10:40) Lisa and Jackie stress the importance of talking about the losses in order to avoid minimizing our collective and individual experiences. In order to really get through something, they encourage, we have to feel it first.

(12:29) Jackie commends the team of therapists at Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan, expressing her gratitude and amazement at this group of professionals who are committed to helping those in need.

Reporting by Dan Meloy; narration by Michael Stechschulte; production by Ron Pangborn

Listen to ‘Detroit Stories’ on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or Spotify . Podcasts also will be posted biweekly on


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