OWENSBORO, Ky. (10/5/13) – A long-term vision to develop a non-profit, faith-based counseling service focused on helping people president and CEO Gregory Baize referred to as those who “deal abnormally with normal problems of life” came to fruition on Tuesday with the opening of Mediation and Counseling Center in the Logsdon Community Center on Friendship Drive.
“There are no crazy people,” he said. “There are normal people dealing with an abnormal situation… having trouble dealing with it in an abnormal way.”
The Mediation and Counseling Center will offer a variety of counseling services such as helping people deal with various forms of grief, a “nurturing parenting program,” substance abuse counseling for adolescents, and divorce-related mediation and recovery needs.
Baize said the goal of the divorce mediation service is to help couples that choose to separate do so amicably without the need for attorneys, whose involvement could mean large legal fees that leave both parties financially strapped. He said those who feel they have no other recourse than to divorce can use his mediation service for about $150.
The process of developing a counseling center wasn’t a quick one. Baize said he began considering the idea in 2007, while working with family in a different line of work. Though he had worked in the counseling field before as a nurse psychiatric specialist, he left the field and “tried other things for a few years” before coming back.
“I started thinking about education and what I needed to do,” he said when asked about his decision to come back to the therapy field.
He said people he talked to about the idea told him it couldn’t be done.
“Don’t tell me I can’t do something,” he said. “I’ll probably interrupt you by doing it.”
The opportunity to house the counseling agency at the Logsdon Community Center was a major piece of the puzzle, as it allowed Baize to put more money into the programs he intends to offer.
Potential clients can schedule their first meeting at no charge, where they would have the opportunity to decide if they want to work with the agency for therapy services. Baize said he doesn’t plan to accept insurance and will charge a fee based on a sliding scale. Typically, the fee would be about the same as a copay amount.
Baize said one of his personal goals for the new agency is to overcome the “stigma” of therapy.
“There’s a lot of stigma with going to a therapist, but not with going to an oncologist when you have cancer,” he said. “I want to tear down those stigmas.”
The center will serve clients in the seven counties of the Green River Area Development District, including Daviess, Hancock, Henderson, Webster, Union, McLean, and Ohio.
Baize was welcomed to the community on Friday with a Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting ceremony, at which he shared his plans for development of the agency. To learn more about the counseling center or to schedule an appointment, visit the agency’s website at mccwky.org or call 270-852-6516.
Photo provided by Amy Jackson and Jamie Roby
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