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Lakeland, FL – Peace River Center, a nonprofit behavioral health organization serving Polk, Hardee, and Highlands Counties has opened an outpatient behavioral health location in Lake Wales and will open a new mental illness recovery program in Haines City to reach a broader population.

“As the long-serving community mental health center for Polk, Highlands and Hardee Counties, we continue to review community needs and to expand services to increase access to much-needed mental health services,” said Bill Gardam, CEO of Peace River Center (PRC).

Located at 815 State Road 60 E., PRC’s new outpatient therapy office includes master’s prepared and licensed therapy staff, and psychiatric medical staff. The Lake Wales location is open for business and accepting new patients for outpatient behavioral health services and medication management. Common disorders treated are major depression, bipolar illness, anxiety, schizophrenia, ADHD and child behavioral disorders. PRC’s broad range of services also helps individuals with co-occurring mental health and addiction disorders as well as mental illness recovery services. Services can be accessed by calling 863-978-4800.

“PRC worked with AdventHealth Lake Wales to identify and develop the Lake Wales office location. Our goal is to help patients and their families with community-based care and recovery after an inpatient stay, when necessary,” added Royce Brown, CEO, AdventHealth Lake Wales.

PRC is also expanding by opening a second mental health recovery Clubhouse in Haines City, located at 751 Scenic Hwy in Haines City. “We believe that individuals living with mental illnesses can and should have the opportunity to reach their full potential in a friendly, inviting and productive environment, and that is the focus of a Clubhouse,” added Gardam. Clubhouse is a nationally recognized mental illness recovery program model that provides opportunities for work, wellness and socialization. PRC currently operates Club Success, accredited by Clubhouse International, in Lakeland.

“Adding a second Clubhouse in Haines City is extremely exciting and will provide better access to care and services for Northeast Polk County residents,” Miranda Mills, Director of PRC’s Clubhouse programs shared. Our Clubhouses provide opportunities to learn skills, have a structured day and gain employment, but most importantly, they are a place for individuals with mental illness to belong. At the Clubhouse, persons living with mental illness are called members rather than clients or patients because it helps foster relationships and recognizes the joint partnership that allows members to work on their mental illness recovery by completing education, employment and housing goals, Mills added. To become a Clubhouse member individuals must have a mental health diagnosis and complete an intake process. To become a member call 863-519-0874. In-person services in Haines City will begin July 5.

“The number of individuals impacted by mental illness is continuing to grow, especially since the advent of the COVID pandemic. That’s why it’s so important for PRC to continue to expand and grow to meet the need, especially in communities like Lake Wales and Haines City,” said Gardam. 

About Peace River Center

Peace River Center is a licensed and accredited, non-profit provider of mental health, substance use, and integrated medical services serving Polk, Highlands, and Hardee counties. Peace River Center provides options for people struggling with mental health and addiction, for children and adults coping with the trauma of abuse and violence, crisis intervention for people in acute need, and housing and community support and integration for people affected by domestic violence or whose recovery requires more support and time. Peace River Center offers inpatient, outpatient, home-, school- and community-based services, telehealth, and mobile programs to individuals, groups, and families. Peace River Center’s dedicated and compassionate staff of more than 400 operate 36 programs out of 27 locations and provide 24/7 emergency psychiatric response services to the community through our mobile psychiatric Crisis Response Team. In FY2020, Peace River Center had contact with and provided services to more than 21,500 children, adolescents, adults, and seniors. For more information visit

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