Highland Park High School offers mental health services after parade filming
HIGHLAND PARK, Illinois. – Highland Park began picking up the pieces on Wednesday afternoon after a mass shooting killed seven people and injured dozens more on July 4.
Families were collecting items they had left on the parade route as they fled the gunfire. Counseling services are also offered, as well as other forms of support.
The FBI opened a “Family Assistance Center” at Highland Park High School to provide mental health services and government assistance to members of the community.
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The site will support anyone of any age who is experiencing emotional distress following Monday’s horrific shooting.
The FBI’s “Victim Services Response Team” is here to help.
The center will be open until 9 p.m. on Wednesday and from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday and Friday. Counselors are willing to listen and help community members process what they have witnessed and felt.
Meanwhile, neighbors come together to support family, friends and strangers on this very difficult road to recovery.
“I just brought water, hot wheels and stuffed animals that I saw they were asking for on my Facebook feed. I was at the parade with my family, I have two young children, so it’s been tough and quite traumatic…we’re fine but i’ve been going through my facebook feed, reading everyone’s stories, one is more horrifying than the other. the community comes together and helps each other and I just want to do something to help and so that was kind of the first very, very small step, but something that I could do very quickly,” Michelle Gerstin said.
Additionally, once personal effects that have been left downtown within the police perimeter are picked up and assessed by investigators, residents can report to the high school to claim those items.