A group home for boys in Carbon County is now closed. The CONCERN residential unit in Mahoning Township off Route 443 effectively closed it's doors on Friday.
CONCERN administration said it was a tough choice, but one it ultimately had to make.
The main reason for stopping the group home program is finances. They have 15 locations to support across Pennsylvania including one in Maryland. Because of COVID-19, the future of funding for concern is in question.
"With COVID going on and the uncertainty with the future and finances. It was a decision that had to be made." said CONCERN CEO Gordon May.
May said it was a tough decision to cut the group home program for troubled youths, but they did not do it without a transition plan for the 12 children who were living at the facility on Country Club Road.
"Five of the youths were sent to transition to our Coatsville program. Same type of service, just a different location. Some youth went home to their families, other youths went to different services, different facilities." May said.
May said CONCERN is not the only mental health provider that is reeling in the wake of COVID-19 and the uncertainty that comes with it.
"It's just a really high stress, tough environment for a lot of people right now." May said, "I don't know if people really realize the impact COVID has had on the system and what it's doing to providers, and staff, and the kids."
But not all services from the building are lost. Traveling therapists are still working out of the office, visiting homes in the area to meet with families to help them through their problems.
"In Carbon/Monroe, we actually have four staff. Two family based teams in the area that are still providing services, and have provided service throughout COVID." May said, "And obviously with all the mental health concerns, we're really happy to keep that program in there and keep it going."
The future of the building is undecided. They will either repurpose it and possibly bring in different services or sell the property.