Named in 1972 after its original Maple Drive location, the nonprofit Maple Counseling Center celebrated its 50th anniversary with a “Tea and Tequila” afternoon high tea on the Garden Terrace at The Maybourne Beverly Hills on Oct. 23. The evening benefitted Maple Center’s mission, which is to provide low-cost comprehensive mental health services to adults, children, couples, and families, while also providing training for graduate and postgraduate students working towards licensure in the mental health field. The afternoon included Claridge’s teas and Casamigos tequila tastings, plus an awards presentation hosted by NBC4 news anchor and reporter, Robert Kovacik. Featuring Miss Universe Juri Watanabe as the keynote speaker, the event honored Judy Briskin and Rex Wilder with the Humanitarian Award, and Kristin and John Jameson with the Philanthropic Leadership Award. The program also provided a look ahead to the new developments at the center that will color the next 50 years.
“COVID, Black Lives Matter, a rise in hate crimes, school shootings – they affect us all, every single day,” Kovacik said. “Maple Counseling, with its new expanded services, will reach an even bigger community whose voices need to be heard. And the community needs to know that it is okay to not be okay.”
Students in the city have too benefitted from the counseling center’s high-quality services, at an accessible price. For years, the Beverly Hills School Unified District has contracted with the Maple Center to provide individual and group counseling services to students on campus at the high school.
While the average fee per counseling session is $25, no one will be denied if they cannot pay.
Over the last few months, the Maple Center has raised over $1.1 million on behalf of its mission and honorees. Of those funds, $700,000 is specifically earmarked for the new Briskin Wilder Welcome Center. Characterized as both a program and a place, the Welcome Center allows for expanded mental health care services either through the Maple Center or an outside agency.
This year marks more than one milestone for Maple Counseling, with new headquarters opening in mid-city Los Angeles. The new 10,000-square-foot state-of-the-art facility is located near the intersection of La Cienega Boulevard and the I-10 Freeway.
“We are thrilled to honor Judy Briskin, Rex Wilder, and John and Kristin Jameson at this year’s Maple Counseling 50th Anniversary Gala,” said Hon. Myra Lurie, Chair of the Maple Counseling Board of Directors. “Mental health impacts people from all walks of life. They have helped transform the lives of countless individuals and families seeking mental health care for themselves or a loved one in Los Angeles County.”