The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

May 18, 2013

Bumper-to-bumper kids: Leonardo’s hosts Children’s Mental Health Awareness

By Phyllis Zorn, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Judging by the bumper-to-bumper children and adults at Leonardo’s Discovery Warehouse and Adventure Quest on Saturday, the second annual Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day was a bigger success than the first.

Children from toddlers to teens enjoyed playing at Adventure Quest and learning in Leonardo’s, while adults learned about the array of activities, insurance programs and services available for families.

Cimarron Council Boy Scouts, Mollie Babb counseling, Meadowlake, Oklahoma Health Authority, Enid Counseling and Diagnostic Center, Choices Institute, ATS Counseling and Focus Institute, 4 R Kids, Solutions for Life, Sooner Success, Pumpkin Patch Kids, Oklahoma Family Network and Oakwood Bowl were among the organizations with information booths and people to talk to to find out more about how the organizations can help.

Melinda Snowden, Oklahoma Health Care Authority, had information for parents on Sooner Care and the services available under its umbrella.

“A lot of people do not know they qualify for Sooner Care,” Snowden said.

People who qualify for Sooner Care, but have no transportation to take their children to see a doctor, have no problem, Snowden said. The Sooner Ride transportation service will come pick them up — even if the medical appointment is out of town.

“They usually like to have at least 72 hours if it’s a longer trip or out of town,” Snowden said. “But for others, 24 hours notice.”

Snowden said people who think they might meet income guidelines should apply online for Sooner Care. Some people qualify with slightly higher incomes than the guidelines, so Snowden encourages them to apply and see.

“We tell people to go ahead and apply online,” Snowden said. “It will tell you right away whether you are accepted.”

The income limit for a family of four is $3,446 per month, or $41,348 per year.

Outside in the Adventure Quest parking lot, firemen did duty roasting hot dogs next to a fire truck and a sheriff’s deputy showed off the DARE car.

The family-friendly event was jointly sponsored by Garfield County Systems of Care, Enid Public Schools and Integris Bass Baptist Health Center.