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On a mid-September afternoon, Albertina Kerr received an urgent request, as smoky skies blanketed the Portland metro area and raging wildfires began to threaten the residents of Marion County.

Providence Behavioral Health System was issued a Level 2 “Be Set” notice—meaning it was paramount that they evacuate their crisis psychiatric unit at Willamette Falls. Their staff needed a safe place for the kids in their care.

Call it kismet. “Sometimes things are just meant to be,” says Kerr’s CEO Jeff Carr. “Up until that morning, our Children’s Crisis Psychiatric facility had been nearly at capacity.”

Kerr was able to provide the Providence staff an entire unit to ensure these kids continued receiving uninterrupted crisis care.

“It’s an important reminder of how many children and families are really struggling with mental health challenges,” Carr notes. “And, how it takes all of us as a community to come together to support them.”

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