Peer support specialist Christina Little knew her  elderly and isolated client Lydia would  benefit from the  services offered through Providence’s ElderPlace in Seaside. But Lydia was  suspicious about the program. “By being a consistent  support  to her, I helped give her the emotional safety she needed,”  said Christina. Lydia allowed Christina to go with her when  she enrolled in ElderPlace. “Although Lydia has some ongoing  struggles, ElderPlace has been a great success for her.”

Thanks to your support, Better Outcomes thru Bridges, known as BOB, began operating out of Providence Seaside  Hospital in 2022. Both Christina and Dean Louder, emergency department outreach specialist, work directly with people  who have a high rate of emergency department use and are struggling with issues, such as mental health,  substance  abuse and complex medical needs.

Dean meets with patients who’ve been discharged from the emergency room and may need additional support and

services. Many of his clients are homeless, and most are over 50. He has noticed that his relationships with clients  develop  organically. “Once a client begins to trust me, they will start  sharing what’s happening in their lives, and that’s when the  work begins,” he said. “Usually there are friends and family  involved, and now you have a group of people who are  engaged and working towards the same goal.” 

For Christina, the core of what she does is “build trust, show  up consistently and be a safe person for people who don’t have someone they can rely on.” Like Dean, she helps find  and connect her clients with resources they need. Many of her clients are socially isolated and have complex health care   needs. “I wanted to work with folks who are neurodivergent and are struggling. I want to be a support for them,” she said.  “This role really offers that in so many ways.”

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