Cobb students now have access to a 24/7 hotline offering free and confidential access to services for mental illness, substance use disorders, and intellectual and developmental disabilities. The new smartphone app, which will support the Georgia Crisis and Access Line (GCAL), was announced by Governor Brian Kemp, First Lady Marty Kemp, and state officials.
“Traveling across the state, Marty and I have heard firsthand from parents, students, teachers, and administrators about the growing mental health crisis in our schools and communities. That’s why we’re taking action to fund mental health intervention services, school security measures, and innovative tools like the My GCAL app,” stated Governor Kemp. “I applaud the hard work of Commissioner Fitzgerald and the Department of Behavioral Health & Developmental Disabilities to build this resource for our state and lend a helping hand to those in need.”
The My GCAL app, designed for Apple and Android smartphones, was created to reach Georgia’s youth in times of need, and GCAL is staffed by caring professionals, including licensed clinicians, who are available 24/7 to address behavioral health crises, make referrals for treatment, and dispatch mobile crisis response teams.
“Right now, Georgia’s youth face tremendous pressure to ‘fit in’ with their peers, and it can take a severe emotional and physical toll on their day-to-day lives,” stated First Lady Marty Kemp. “As the parents of three teenage daughters, Brian and I understand that Georgia families face this challenge every single day. We’re committed to standing with them in this fight.”
The app enables users to receive immediate support by communicating with caring GCAL professionals via text message, chat, or phone. While the My GCAL app is targeted at youth, GCAL is available to anyone in Georgia.
Georgia’s new statewide app comes on the heels of the Cobb County School District launching the District’s SafeSchools Alert Tip Line. Via the Cobb Schools app, students, staff members, and parents are able to report safety concerns from anywhere, at any time.
Each member of our school family can easily report tips, anonymously if desired, on bullying, harassment, drugs, vandalism, threats of violence, or other safety issues of concern.
For more information on how the Cobb County School District works to keep students safe visit http://www.cobbshield.com/.