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The Bridge Launches Cutting Edge Programs in a New Home

New Model Combines Therapeutic and Holistic Approach to Behavioral Health

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Joseph Tempesta, Jr.,Mayor of West Caldwell, cuts the ribbon with The Bridge’s CEO, Inya Chehadé,Bridge CEO.From left to right,background, are Bob Masella, BridgeBoard President;Rev. Dr. Michael Festa, Essex County Health Officer; Gerry Tuch, Treasurer, Bridge Board of Trustees; Mel Levine, Mayor of North Caldwell and Secretary, Bridge Board of Trustees; David Black, Bridge Board of Trustees.

On October 26, over 60 members of the Greater Essex Community celebrated the opening of The Bridge Center for Wellbeing and its launch of expanded and innovative programs to promote behavioral health. The open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony, held at 860 Bloomfield Avenue, West Caldwell, showcased what will now become The Bridge’s first permanent home. A capital campaign was also announced in support of The Bridge’s ambitious initiatives.

“The Bridge began as a substance abuse counseling center, but today it helps people with a much wider range of needs—mental health counseling, crisis intervention and more,” explained Board of Trustees President Bob Masella.

“Our tagline says it all─‘Healthy minds. Healing hearts. Peaceful communities,’” added CEO Inya Chehade. “We want people to feel that they are heard, that they matter, and that they are relevant.”

Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr., and West Caldwell Mayor Joseph Tempesta, Jr., who assisted in the ribbon-cutting, both commended The Bridge. “Government can’t provide all of the services individuals and families need,” said DiVincenzo. “We are very fortunate to have organizations like The Bridge.” Tempesta offered the township’s support in promoting The Bridge’s work.

The Bridge is transforming its services in response to the needs of 21st century families, such as increased levels of anxiety and addiction in the schools, parents struggling to balance the demands of work and home, and seniors facing depression and isolation. The Bridge will combine the best therapeutic care with holistic approaches such as yoga, meditation and mindfulness. They’ll also host community seminars designed to build awareness of the issues affecting the community’s youth and families.

The new 5,000-square-foot facility, located in the heart of downtown West Caldwell, features an open floor plan, natural light and modular walls to accommodate a wide variety of needs. The layout includes 11 counseling offices, a play therapy room, meditation space and a main conference room.

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