Links & Resources

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DSHS Peer Counselors

Certified Peer Counselors work with their peers, adults and youth, and the parents of children receiving mental health services. Certified Peer Counselors draw upon their experiences to help their peers find hope and make progress toward recovery. Because of their own life experience, they are uniquely equipped to provide support, encouragement and resources to those with mental health challenges.

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Disability Rights Washington

Disability Rights Washington (DRW) is a private non-profit organization that protects the rights of people with disabilities statewide. Our mission is to advance the dignity, equality, and self-determination of people with disabilities. We work to pursue justice on matters related to human and legal rights.

We provide free services to people with disabilities.

This video describes DRW and gives examples of what we do, where we started, and how we serve those with disabilities in Washington state.

Contact us for:

  • disability rights information;
  • technical assistance for disability issues;
  • general information about legal rights;
  • strategies about how to become a stronger self-advocate;
  • information sheets on a wide range of subjects to empower individuals with disabilities to better advocate for themselves;
  • community education and training; and
  • legal services for disability rights violations.

We focus our legal resources on systemic cases which will improve service systems for people with disabilities.

We exist because society and service systems are not always fair or responsive to people with disabilities. We work for change in policies, laws, and systems that promote:

  • freedom from abuse and neglect;
  • legal rights;
  • adequately funded, appropriate supports and services; and
  • communities that involve everyone.

DRW is governed by a Board of Directors with help from our Advisory Councils. These groups are made up of people with disabilities, family members and others who have an interest in disability rights.

DRW is a member organization of the National Disability Rights Network. A substantial portion of the DRW budget is federally funded.

How to Contact us:

Disability Rights Washington (DRW) does not respond to email or voicemails requesting information and referrals or other assistance.

U.S. Postal Mail and Telephone, and Directions

Disability Rights Washington

315 – 5th Avenue South, Suite 850

Seattle, WA 98104

Tel:      (206) 324-1521 or in WA State: (800) 562-2702

Fax:     (206) 957-0729

Language interpreters are available via the AT&T Language Line.

Washington Relay (TTY) available via 711

All collect calls from correctional facilities will be accepted.


Please send general email inquiries only, as DRW does not accept email requests for Information and Referral services.  (See Above.)

In the event you do solicit assistance through email, your message will be returned asking you to contact DRW’s intake line between 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. or 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. Monday – Friday.  (See above.)

People sending email to DRW have a reasonable expectation of privacy. However, DRW does not use encryption, and all email coming to DRW is routed through a third party internet service provider (ISP) before it reaches DRW.   Although it is unlikely that an ISP will intercept and review a message, it is a possibility, especially if a message is incorrectly addressed and “bounced back” to the sender. Therefore, you may want to consider alternative methods of accessing our services if you are concerned about confidentiality.

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Housing Authority of Thurston County

Our Mission

The Mission of the Housing Authority of Thurston County is to provide safe, decent, and affordable housing and services to persons with disabilities, low income and at-risk individuals and families. The ultimate goal of the Housing Authority is to assist individuals and families to secure long-term permanent housing.

Our Vision

We will deliver high-quality housing and services to our clients and our community. This will allow persons with disabilities, low income and at-risk individuals and families to address the factors which have caused instability and crisis in their lives.

Our Program Goals

To increase affordable housing opportunities for persons with disabilities, low income and at-risk individuals and families. To create and support efforts which preserve residential areas, promote the rehabilitation of housing and enhance the development of communities. To work in partnership with the community to develop successful programs for emergency, transitional and permanent housing opportunities for persons with disabilities, low income and at-risk individuals and families in need.

HATC Core Values

  • SERVICE to our clients and the community.
  • EFFICIENCY of systems to deliver the most effective programs and services.
  • RESPECT for our clients, our community members, our non-profit partners and our co-workers.
  • VALUE of celebrating the differences in personality, work style and life style of our clients and colleagues.
  • INVOLVEMENT in community planning and networking with our partners.
  • CREATIVITY in develping and administering high-quality programs.
  • EMPLOYEE and family-friendly organization.

Call us at 360-753-8292

Our address is  1206 12th Avenue SE   Olympia WA


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Northwest Justice Project

Our Vision: “Justice for All Low-Income People in Washington”

Welcome to the Northwest Justice Project (NJP), Washington’s publicly funded legal aid program.  Each year NJP provides critical civil legal assistance and representation to thousands of low-income people in cases affecting basic human needs such as family safety and security, housing preservation, protection of income, access to health care, education and other basic needs.

NJP’s mission is to secure justice through high quality legal advocacy that promotes the long-term well-being of low-income individuals, families, and communities. As a dynamic statewide law firm, we pursue our mission through legal advice and representation, community partnerships, and education to empower clients and combat injustice in all its forms.

NJP operates a toll-free intake and referral hotline called CLEAR [1] (Coordinated Legal Education Advice and Referral). CLEAR serves as the statewide, centralized point of access for clients seeking free legal help, including advice, education, limited legal services, self-help materials and, where available, referrals for further representation. NJP attorneys in offices around the state provide assistance and direct representation in high priority, complex cases, including cases that address barriers to persons seeking access to our justice system, and also engage in community education efforts.

NJP also maintains WashingtonLawHelp [2], a public website containing an extensive library of legal resources, self-help materials, including necessary court forms in areas of law needed most by low income persons, the great majority of whom are forced to appear in court unrepresented.  In addition, NJP is an integral member of and provides support for the Alliance for Equal Justice, Washington’s coordinated statewide civil legal aid delivery system, which brings together a network of volunteer attorney programs, specialty legal aid providers, and supporters working to ensure equal justice for all low-income communities in Washington.

Consistent with NJP’s commitment to combat injustice by improving access to our civil justice system, all NJP facilities are accessible, and NJP provides language and sign interpreters for persons needing assistance to access our services.  As a statewide organization whose staff, Board and clients are diverse in background, experience, culture and other qualities, NJP is also committed to a policy of equal opportunity and fosters a mutually respectful environment free of barriers and discriminatory practices in all its activities.  NJP works to ensure its commitment to basic fairness by adherence to NJP’s Guiding Principles [3].

Northwest Justice Project | 401 Second Avenue S, Suite 407, Seattle, WA 98104 | (p) 206.464.1519 | Toll-Free 888.201.1012


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Homeless Shelters

Shelters in Thurston County

For Mason County Homeless Shelter – call 360-427-6919

St. Mike’s Shelter for Men – Cold Weather Shelter

  • Olympia, WA 98501
  • (360) 528-8999
  • Cold Weather Shelter Emergency Shelter

Salvation Army Homeless Shelter Olympia

  • Olympia, WA 98501
  • (360) 352-8596
  • Homeless Shelter and Services

Yelm Community Services Emergency Shelter

  • Yelm, WA 98597
  • 360-458-7000
  • Emergency Homeless Shelter.

Housing Authority Of Thurston County Olympia

  • Olympia, WA 98501
  • (360) 753-8292
  • Housing Authority, Rental assistance, emergency housing, transitional housing, permanent housing, home repair.

Thurston County Family Center

  • Olympia, WA 98501
  • (360) 753-3340
  • Emergency services, counseling and mental health, elderly and disabled, childcare.

Olympia Union Gospel Mission – Life Recovery Center

  • Olympia, WA 98507
  • 360-709-9725

Olympia Union Gospel Mission – Gemesis Acres (for Women And Children)

  • Olympia, WA 98507
  • 360-709-9725

Olympia Union Gospel Mission – Jeremiah House (for Men)

  • Olympia, WA 98507
  • 360-709-9725


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Thurston/Mason Ombuds

What is an Ombuds?

An Ombuds is a helper whose job it is to assist you to solve problems you may have with your counselor, case manager, your mental health clinic, or the agencies that help you get mental health care.

What is the purpose of the Ombuds?

Ombuds receive concerns and grievances and assist in quickly resolving them at the lowest possible level. The Ombuds person also acts as an information service for consumers.

Am I eligible to get Ombuds services?

Thurston and Mason County residents who receive or are eligible for publicly funded mental health services may request Ombuds services. Concerns may also be taken from family members and other interested parties.

What will it cost me to have an Ombuds?

There are no fees.

What can the Ombuds do for me?

  • Listen to your problem.
  • Analyze what is involved and help you determine an appropriate solution.
  • Explain and Investigate facts, laws, policies, and procedures.
  • Mediate to resolve the problem on an informal level, if possible.
  • Assist you in the complaint and grievance process and follow through until the complaint is resolved.
  • Assure that your concerns are heard in the way in which you want them heard, clearly and unemotionally.
  • Advocate for your mental health treatment choices and rights.
  • Remain in contact with you to see that you are kept informed until the concern or grievance is resolved.
  • Provide information on resources and your rights.
  • Recommend changes to correct a problem or prevent future occurrences.
  • Maintain your confidentiality..

What can’t the Ombuds do for me?

  • Cannot provide services such as counseling or case management
  • Cannot give you legal advice or act as your attorney
  • Cannot ensure any specific outcome
  • Cannot represent you as an attorney does

What can I do to help resolve my complaint?

  • Be prepared to tell who, what, when, and where of the problem;
  • Know what you want to have happen;
  • Consider what would be a fair remedy;
  • Keep the Ombuds informed on how you can be contacted.
  • Keep the Ombuds informed of changes which effect the problem and its solution.

How do I contact the Ombuds when I need help?

Call  (360) 867-2556 or (800) 658-4105

Email the Ombuds

Write or Come In to:

Public Health and Social Services

Attn: Ombuds

412 Lilly Road NE

Olympia, WA 98506

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