A local mental health clinic is offering free therapy sessions to victims of the Cielo Vista Walmart mass shooting.
Some of these victims already in therapy were at the scene or personally knew someone who was directly affected.
“It was a very, very traumatic experience and although right now they may think that they’re okay or they’re trying to forget about it.. it’s going to stay in there minds. It’s going to stay in our minds even though we weren’t there,” Lorena Garcia, a case worker at El Paso Mental Health told KTSM.
Counselors at El Paso Mental Health said there’s no real timeline of predicting when victims will start to feel better, which is why they stepped in to help them.
“I was actually in the first session that was done here with the people who came and I just cried because it was so hard to see how traumtized people were,” Garcia shared.
“They were able to either save themselves and other people. They’re very very traumatized. Traumatized to a point where they can’t function at 100% again. They can’t go back to their normal lives. They’re having to require medication. They can’t go back to the stores nor Walmart, and they’re having a really really hard time,” Maria Orta, a professional counselor said.
The clinic offers individual and group weekly sessions. The first session broke through barriers and is leaving some results for patients.
“It was more about just letting them vent, and right now they’re actually saying ‘Yes it is working. It is helping me, I’m sleeping and feeling a little bit better, and I’m already thinking about the possibility to go back to work,” Orta shared.
With difficulties of moving forward, therapists at the clinic said they’ll be working with patients as long as they need.
“They’ve just been looking around to see where they can get services and of course they are coming here and we’re going to continue providing those services until they feel that they’re better,” Orta said.
The clinic urges anyone affected by the shooting to seek the help they are providing. Therapy sessions are on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s at 9440 Viscount Blvd. Suite 100.