Helping people is second nature to Dr. Kathy Levinson. She has been invested in the Port Washington Counseling Center for more than a decade, working as past president and current board member. Community service and the desire to help children and families has been in Levinson’s heart since childhood.
Levinson, a psychologist, has been involved in the community for two decades. The Victorian frame building at 225 Main St. has been home to Port Counseling, a drug and alcohol treatment center, since 1970. The Port Counseling Center, a division of Long Beach Reach, is hosting a fundraiser at LaMotta’s Restaurant that will honor Levinson for her efforts on June 13 from 6:30 to 9 p.m.
The building has continuously housed other social welfare agencies serving Port Washington residents since 1922. Beginning in the 1960s, the troubling rise of drug and alcohol use among Port Washington youth called for the formation of a center for teenagers. Port Alert, founded in 1970, filled this need by providing a place to gather, engage in recreational activities and receive counseling. In 1972, Port Alert purchased 225 Main St. for $55,000 from Port Washington Community Services. In 2016, it was renovated extensively and reopened in 2017.
In 1982, Port Alert’s name was changed to the current Port Counseling Center. This not-for-profit substance abuse treatment center is staffed by professionals who specialize in treating adults as well as adolescents who suffer from drug and alcohol addictions as well as their parents, spouses and siblings. Clients are also offered vocational, anger management and relapse prevention counseling in English and Spanish.
In 2013, the center merged with Long Beach Reach, a multi-service community-based nonprofit treatment center. Port Counseling Center offers individual, group and family counseling, marital or couples counseling, a 12-step facilitation approach, brief intervention approach, motivational interviewing, anger management, and relapse prevention planning. Port Counseling Center, a division of Long Beach Reach, is licensed by the New York State substance abuse agency.
Executive Director Dr. Joseph Smith said, “Capital financing provided by New York State Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services and project management through the NYS Dormitory Authority resulted in the newly renovated and expanded building enabling all of us at the center to provide a warm and inviting environment for individuals and families in Port Washington and surrounding communities suffering from the effects of drug and alcohol dependency. A modest sliding fee scale and acceptance of Medicaid and insurance ensures the availability of professional services to all residents, regardless of the ability to pay.”
With the rising tide of the opioid epidemic, it is now more than ever vital to have such a resource in the community. In order to continue serving the community, your help is needed. Tickets are $75 per person. Visit www.longbeachreach.com/levinson-fundraiser to purchase tickets or call 516-889-2332.
If you are unable to attend, donations can be made by visiting at www.longbeachreach.com/donate.