OKLAHOMA CITY -- Mary Ann Ferrell, Social Services Specialist II, is the August 2012 Spirit of Service award recipient.
Last April a client walked in the door at 72C in Tulsa, just as clients do every day. She wanted to discuss her disability case. Ferrell sat down with the client in the interview room.
It quickly became evident that the client suffered from serious mental health issues. She had just been discharged from the OSU Medical Center and she was homeless, hungry, tired and agitated.
While in the interview room, the client began hitting the walls and complaining of "hearing voices." She also threatened suicide. To ensure the safety of other clients and employees, a security officer was called.
Ferrell spent two hours working with the client and after utilizing internal and external resources, she arranged for the client's medical card, debit card and money payments to be replaced and sent to a safe address. Ferrell also contacted Adult Protective Services and was instructed to call 911 for an Emergency Order of Detention. After assessment, the client was calm and was allowed to leave.
Ferrell took responsibility for her client's well-being, understood her mental health issues and effectively worked with the client to provide good customer service. Ferrell's compassion, patience and willingness to help resulted in a peaceful resolution of a tense situation and helped provide the kind of assistance the client so badly needed.