Grants from local community funds help Fredericksburg-area organizations provide everything from free mental health services to care for high-risk maternity patients.

Fredericksburg Counseling Services Free Mental Health Clinic got a grant from the Joe and Mary Wilson Community Benefit Fund of the Mary Washington Hospital Foundation for general operating expenses. The nonprofit clinic offers free counseling, provided by interns from various universities who are gaining hours toward getting their licenses as mental health professionals.

The five interns at work have programs at various agencies within the region, offering sessions on self-esteem, bullying and school refusal, students who feel anxiety or emotional distress at the thought of attending classes.

The clinic also has received grants from the William J. Kinnamon Jr. Memorial Fund, the David Morgan Fund and the Behavioral Health Fund of the Community Foundation of the Rappahannock Region.

The Wilson fund also awarded a $100,000 grant to the Rappahannock Area Health District for its program on complicated obstetrical and high-risk maternity care.

The program annually provides outpatient prenatal care to several hundred uninsured or under-insured women in Fredericksburg and the counties of Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania and Stafford. Many have medical, obstetrical or other conditions that make their pregnancies more complex or high-risk.

The grant funding allows patients to receive intensive case management to help reduce infant and maternal fatalities as well as preventable emergency department visits and hospitalizations, premature births and low birth weight births.

Cathy Dyson: 540/374-5425

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