Meet our Market neighbors: Valley Cities
Tucked in between Heritage House at the Market and The Market Commons on Western Avenue is a powerful place of healing for the community. Welcome to Valley Cities Behavioral Health Care in Pike Place Market, a behavioral health clinic that provides mental health counseling, substance abuse treatment and case management for those in need around the Market and downtown.
“Look around the area,” says Jessica Williams, Valley Cities Clinic Manager. “You can see the need downtown, and it’s only getting more in-demand. Even if someone isn’t struggling with mental health, our case managers work so hard to help people experiencing homelessness and help find them resources.”
To quickly support patients struggling with addiction, Valley Cities staff administer medication-assisted treatment.
The clinic has a variety of programs to address the current needs of the downtown neighborhood. Case managers help patients find resources, temporary shelter and complete housing applications. The staff welcome new clients every morning, setting them up with needed services and appointing them to an available clinician or referring them to treatment.
Valley Cities was encouraged to join the Market two years ago in partnership with NeighborCare Health at Pike Place Market to create an integrated model of care for both the physical and mental health of patients. With this close collaboration, the two Market services refer patients to each other and ensure that their care is holistic in both body and mind.
A client of Valley Cities shared their experience: “My primary care doctor at NeighborCare referred me here,” said the patient. “I’m in a bad situation, a lot of trauma, helplessness. But, when I come here, I feel people try to help me, warm me up. I feel helped, and I trust them.”
Two years in, partnership and collaboration with Valley Cities is now flourishing across the Market. “People will come here from the Senior Center, Food Bank and The Market Commons. Even fellow Market vendors will walk down and bring their colleagues and friends over.” said Jessica.
The network of services in the Market allows Valley Cities to address patient needs immediately. “Every resource you can think of is within walking distance,” said Jessica. “If patients come in hungry, we can walk them down to the Food Bank [for groceries] or the Senior Center’s lunch service. If there’s a resource we need help finding, we can walk the client right over to Velma [The Resource Coordinator] at The Commons!”
Being next door to The Commons not only allows for easy access to resource referrals, but is also creating synergy with social activities and support programs offered by The Commons.
“The Commons staff came over one day to ask if we’d like to participate in the Giving Tree,” Jessica smiles. “I figured she would bring a couple of hats, but when she came by again, it was a full box of hand warmers, socks, and winter wear!”
For Jessica and the rest of the staff at Valley Cities, the kindness and connection to the Market community are vital to the success of their patients. As the need for mental health services in downtown increases, so does the caseload at Valley Cities. They serve over 200 patients with their small staff of five and hope to continue to be an open door for anyone in need.
“They make me feel like I have energy to fix any problem,” said a Valley Cities patient. “Wherever I go … I know these clinic people are always supporting me. They are always behind me!”
By providing such needed mental health resources in the Market, Valley Cities is an important and valued partner in our mission to nurture a thriving Market community.