Nox first heard of Walk-In Counseling Center from a friend who had been struggling to find a therapist. “The first place she found that was helpful was Walk-In,” Nox recalls.
Since 2018, Nox (who uses they/them pronouns) has been a clinic receptionist at Walk-In. Making mental health services accessible is close to Nox’s heart. Having grown up with a brother who regularly saw a psychiatrist, “I knew from the start of high school that I wanted to work in mental health,” they recall. While working full-time as a case worker at a mental health organization, Nox runs one clinic each week at Walk-In.
One of the most moving examples Nox remembers of serving someone in need was the time an unhoused man came to Walk-In (when we were still in-person!). He was struggling with psychosis along with other serious challenges. The volunteer who saw him was a social worker who was able to connect him with several different resources for food, housing and medicine. “Before coming to Walk-In, he couldn’t get in a safe space. We were able to turn his life in a new direction.”
Nox was the first Walk-In receptionist to use Zoom in 2020 to help us make the transition from in-person to virtual clinics . The sudden transition, spurred by the onset of the COVID-19 epidemic, was a drastic change that many volunteers found challenging. “It was tough, but also really cool. While helping other people (volunteers) at Walk-In learn to use Zoom, I got to know people on other (clinic) teams.”
Because each clinic team includes volunteer clinicians with different training — such as psychology, family therapy or social work – Nox has learned different approaches to apply in their own work. Nox expects to continue to volunteer at Walk-In and particularly looks forward to returning to in-person services.
When the doors open again, you may find Nox at the front desk wearing a button they helped design, inviting you to “ask me about my pronouns.”
The job of welcoming everyone comes easily to Nox. “I look forward to seeing everyone again. I love the Walk-In community. It’s such a fantastic community of people.”
Walk-In is currently planning to resume some in-person clinics in January 2023. Stay tuned for updates.