BY WIL DAY
A new public-private partnership between the county and other organizations has been formed that will help support the operation of COMCARE.
COMCARE provides mental health services to Sedgwick County residents. Sedgwick County commissioners had been debating whether or not to turn COMCARE operations over to private organizations.
Real Estate developer Jason Van Sickle approached commissioners with an alternative. That alternative has led to the formation of a sister organization, a non-profit 501 (c) 3 that will assist COMCARE.
The non-profit will help raise private funding for COMCARE as well as help raise public awareness about the agency and the services it provides, along with volunteer opportunities for the public. COMCARE would remain under the control of Sedgwick County.
However, with the ability to raise public donations to fund the agency, COMCARE would rely less on federal, state and local government funding.
The non-profit has a board of directors that includes mental health professionals and local law enforcement who often deal with residents who face significant mental health issues. COMCARE currently employees around 430 people in Sedgwick County and has a budget of over $40 million.