MENTAL HEALTH

YCC Family Crisis Center in Ogden now accepting text messages

Oct 17, 2023, 5:30 PM | Updated: Oct 18, 2023, 11:18 am

OGDEN — It is certainly not the easiest job out there.

Amber Paaso will be the first to tell you she’s burned out of doing it in the past. 

I have quit at one point,” she said. “I have been doing this for almost 20 years now.” 

She cares too much about what she does to stay away. 

“I love my job. And I particularly love this job because every day is different,” she said. 

Paaso is the victim assistance director for the YCC Family Crisis Center in Ogden. 

It’s a job that is about as important as they come. 

“We provide services to domestic violence and sexual assault victims,” Paaso said. 

Even though it’s heavy work, it is days like these that make her happy. 

She knows she is helping people who may not have anywhere else to turn. 

“That first step is the hardest step to take, and it takes so much courage,” she said. 

What Paaso is really excited about these days is the new text messaging line recently put in. 

Will Utah’s Legislature chip in to help overwhelmed domestic violence programs?

YCC Family Crisis Center has been taking phone calls to its crisis hotline since 1982, but starting last week, the facility is now also accepting text messages to the same number. 

“We just had to work with our IT guy to get the software installed,” Paaso said. “A lot of people have been reaching out to us via social media, on our Facebook page or Instagram, and a lot of times they are saying ‘I don’t feel safe, I don’t feel like I can call you. Is there a way I can connect with you?’ So as a team we decided, hey, we need to move with the times, what can we do to create a text line so at least people can text in?”

Now, the person taking those phone calls is also set up to accept text messages, and someone will be there 24-7.

The phone number to text, and to call, is the same number; 801-392-7273.

If you text, the crisis center will not call you back without your permission.

“We were able to launch that this month, which we thought was great because October is domestic violence awareness month,” Paaso said.

Of course, the need is there every month and it is growing.

This is why Paaso is also excited about a construction project near YCC’s Ogden facility that will provide transitional housing for those who need a safe place to get away.

“There is always a need and sometimes we struggle to reach that need, but we will be there for you,” Paaso said. “We want to help.”

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YCC Family Crisis Center in Ogden now accepting text messages