Community | Fall 2018

EMERGE Counseling Services: Faith-based outpatient mental health services


EMERGE Counseling Services provides mental health services to help improve lives

EMERGE Counseling Services was founded in 1972 to provide outpatient mental health services to those who would otherwise not have access to psychiatric help.

“EMERGE is as important today as it was when it was founded,” says John Palmer, the organization’s president. “With the increase in addiction and pressure on marriages and families, people are under more stress than ever before. Competent professional counselling can be just the thing they need.”

What EMERGE does

EMERGE, a mental health ministry, has 34 Christ-centered clinicians serving more than 550 people each week. Over its 40 years in Akron, it has served more than 200,000 individuals and families through counseling and educational sessions.

The organization was founded by Dr. Richard Dobbins, who integrated biblical teaching with psychological principles to help people find hope and healing during painful and difficult circumstances.

“We believe God created us and can help bring healing to us, and we want to be there for people who are ready to tap into that,” Palmer says.

How its people help

All of EMERGE’s staff and clinicians are faith based, but the organization serves anyone who asks for help. It is also proactively developing partnerships with other agencies in Greater Akron.

“We help them deal with transitions from homelessness and prison, because if we provide homes and jobs but there are still negative mental states, they are not able to move forward and be as productive as they could be,” says Palmer.

EMERGE also provides education through community workshops, pastors’ seminars, marriage tune-ups and retreats, and topic-driven seminars.

Huntington was instrumental in helping EMERGE refinance its mortgage, lowering the monthly payment in the process and allowing it to use money that previously went to the mortgage to pay for other expenses. As a result, the organization will soon be debt free.

“It was possible because Huntington believed in us,” says Palmer. “They saw the progress we were making and the fundraising we were doing and chose to support us. Now we can breathe easier and use our resources to serve more people.”

About the organization

Name: EMERGE Counseling Services
City: Akron, Ohio
Phone: (800) 621-5207
Mission: To help those we serve through intentional training, biblical integration and Christ-centered care.

How you can help

Painting and landscaping help is always welcome, and monetary donations are accepted through the website.