Coping with Stress During the Holidays


Aurora Vista Del Mar Reopens

Aurora Vista Del Mar Modular Office Installation

On the night of Dec. 4, 2017 the Thomas Fire razed two key structures at Aurora Vista del Mar Hospital – our sister hospital just north of Ventura. For ten months, 75 percent of Ventura County’s psychiatric beds were shut down. On October 16, 2018 the Ventura County facility reached a long-awaited landmark — opening a refurbished building with 25 patient beds. 

Vista Del Mar after fire

Because the hospital served as a regional center for adolescent psychiatric care, the fire shut down most of Ventura County’s space serving that population. While the building’s opening doesn’t restore all beds, it represents a critical improvement for the region. Work included demolishing damaged structures and adapting existing ones for inpatient use, staff member Haley Kiger explained. “It was a big job — it’s gratifying to cross this finish line,” Kiger said. Work will continue to restore more capacity. Outpatient services will remain, for now, at a temporary site in Ventura, about four miles from the main facility.

According to CEO Jenifer Nyhuis, “We plan to rebuild the structures destroyed in the fire to regain, and potentially increase, the number of inpatient beds. “The process is projected to take at least two years.”

Audra Strickland



Aurora Charter Oak and The Jason Foundation Provide Suicide Prevention Education to Local Community

Suicide is a national health problem that is also one of the leading causes of preventable death in our nation. 

In California:

  • Suicide is the third leading cause of death for middle and high school age youth (12 – 18).
  • Suicide is the third leading cause of death for college age youth (18 – 22).

The California Youth Risk Behavioral Survey reported:

  • Over 1 out of 7 young people seriously considered suicide in the past twelve months
  • Almost 1 out of 11 young people attempted suicide in the past twelve months

The Jason Foundation and Aurora Charter Oak Hospital are partners in raising awareness and providing education in our local community about youth suicide. 

The Jason Foundation, Inc. (JFI) is a national leader in youth suicide awareness and prevention programs targeted to address the “Silent Epidemic” of youth suicide.  Aurora Charter Oak Hospital is the affiliate office for JFI in Covina, CA. Affiliate offices serve as a hub where parents, teachers, guidance counselors, students, churches and other community organizations can obtain educational materials and learn about training programs available through JFI.  All programs, services, and materials are available to the public at no cost. 

Todd Smith, CEO of Aurora Charter Oak Hospital, said, “We are proud to be affiliated with The Jason Foundation.  Aurora Charter Oak Hospital recognizes how serious the problem of suicide is among adolescents and young adults. Every day, we work with individuals who are at-risk for suicide.  The Jason Foundation has developed excellent awareness and education materials and we are very pleased to have these additional resources for our community.”

Clark Flatt, President of JFI said, “Awareness and education are the foundation for prevention. We are very proud of our work with Aurora Charter Oak Hospital in helping to provide communities across California with programs and resources to help build this foundation for prevention.”

About JFI

JFI is a non-profit organization dedicated to fighting “The Silent Epidemic” of youth suicide through educational programs and resources for young people, educators, parents, and other community groups.  JFI, headquartered in Hendersonville, TN, was founded in 1997 after the tragic death of Jason Flatt, the 16-year-old son of Clark Flatt. For more information, please visit JFI’s website,   

The Jason Foundation representative at Aurora Charter Oak Hospital is Steve Jennings, who may be reached at 626-214-2029 or       

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