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Youth Voices Inspire JIT’s Newest Service

 

With a belief that access to mental health resources is a basic need and a commitment to meeting that need for the youth we serve, we are excited to announce the expansion of JIT’s in-house Mental service and to introduce our new Mental Wellness Supervisor, Dr. Jill Ault.  As JIT’s first-ever Mental Wellness Supervisor, Dr. Jill, will work with staff to design and implement our mental wellness services, including launching a doctoral student training program for Alliant University postgraduate students to receive clinical training. These incredible additions directly result from listening to what our youth participants need and finding ways to bridge those gaps.  

Dr. Jill is a San Diego native who grew up in Chula Vista and has been in practice since 1995. Her experience comes through her work with The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, an inpatient psychiatric hospital, and the counseling center at Vanguard University, formerly Southern California College.  The past eight years of her life have been spent in her private outpatient practice specializing in working with adolescents.  

Dr. Jill enjoys working with those who “start to have a higher sense of identity and question beliefs and values that they may have developed or were taught.” Dr. Jill’s focus is on providing a trusting space where participants can appreciate their emotional intelligence and, in turn, recognize the importance of coping skills to achieve a heightened sense of happiness.  

This new service is a groundbreaking movement, and for the first time in JIT history, we will be able to provide clinical therapy to our participants. In May, Just in Time will be furthering the access participants have to therapy through the partnership with Alliant University’s doctoral students — who will connect with youth as Wellness Interns.  

We hope that by leveraging Dr. Jill’s expertise to grow our mental wellness services, JIT will better equip our participants to thrive as confident, capable, and connected individuals.  As she shares, the potential impact of our new service is exciting, “Being a part of a larger team and organization that is so focused on loving and supporting people to better their lives in a myriad of ways is one more honor that I have been given.  For most people, it can be tough to access mental health care when you realize you need it, and I look forward to having this available to any, and all, participants – all the time.” 

One of Just in Time’s key funders recently asked me to be part of a national advisory group to help revise their philanthropic focus. Like JIT, they wanted to disrupt traditional assumptions and practices that had fallen short of solving the issues they care about most.  

But they knew disruption is only a road to something more – the building of thriving communities.  

Our task was to describe what a thriving community looked and felt like. We shared the usual suspects of economic and social measurements, but it all felt too much like more of the same. We realized all of that data was still not the whole picture of what a thriving community feels like.  

Eventually, we came to it.  A thriving community celebrates itself and its possibilities in much the same way a thriving individual does.  

That’s what we experience in our JIT community. A daily celebration of our shared courage, creativity, compassion, and connection. Even when it’s not easy, we still celebrate who we are and where we’re headed, individually and collectively. And we thrive.   

Don Wells, Chief Empowerment Officer

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