By Cady Inabinett, Managing editor of content
Free counseling services will now be available for the public through Montevallo via the Grainger Community Counseling and Wellness Clinic.
The clinic, which opened on Feb. 17 and is located in the Sims House on Montevallo’s campus, offers a variety of counseling services including general therapy, group therapy, play therapy and telementalhealth counseling services.
The facility features four therapy rooms—with two utilized for general therapy, one utilized for group therapy and one utilized for play therapy.
Prior to renovations of the Sims House, these services were being offered once a week in the Wallace Speech and Hearing Center.
The clinic also functions as a training facility for students in Montevallo’s graduate counseling program. Graduate students specializing in clinical mental health, school counseling and couple and family counseling conduct the clinic’s counseling sessions.
The Grainger Community Counseling and Wellness Clinic is a product of collaboration between the university and the Montevallo Development Cooperative District, which is a partnership between the City of Montevallo, Shelby County and the university that aims to improve the quality of life in Montevallo through capital projects throughout the city.
The project was first approved by MDCD in February 2020, creating a $125,000 budget for renovations to the Sims House.
However, this project sparked debate at Montevallo City Council meetings in 2021—with council members raising concerns over the fact MDCD did not need to get approval from the city council in order to enter into a project. Ultimately, this led the city representative to MDCD at the time, Denise Woodham, to resign—citing that she felt offended by the tone taken on by council members regarding MDCD.
Current city council member Sonya Swords took over as the city representative to MDCD following Woodham’s resignation.
Funding for the project was also provided by Michael and Donna Grainger. Michael Grainger is a 1973 graduate of Montevallo, and the couple has a history of making donations to the university—notably, to the Michael E. Stephens College of Business.
Appointments with the Grainger Community Counseling and Wellness Clinic can be made for anyone age 5 and older via their email, firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at (205) 665-6377. The clinic is open Mondays through Thursdays from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. Childcare services can be provided for those who need it if scheduled ahead of time.
The services provided by the clinic are not aimed at UM students however. Students who are in need of counseling services can receive those for free through Counseling Services.
Cady Inabinett is the managing editor of content for The Alabamian. She’s majoring in English and double-minoring in political science and peace and justice studies. She enjoys reading, watching movies and generally just being pretentious in her free time.