Celebrating 25 Years of Care

A Quarter-Century of Care


In health care, gaps are described as disparities in healthcare access, needs, and medical services when comparing different populations. It may fall along racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic lines. And that is where we thrive.

For more than a quarter-century, Healthy Connections has filled those gaps with high-quality healthcare, dental, behavioral health, and social services. We are a Mena-based nonprofit organization serving the needs of children and adults throughout Central and Western Arkansas. Since our founding in 1998, Healthy Connections has been able to provide much-needed services to families of every lifestyle.

It started from humble beginnings. Based on a community need assessment, Healthy Connections was formed as a home-visiting program to work with new and expectant mothers. This program would provide education, encouragement, education, and resources to ensure these new moms got their babies off to a great start in life.

As needs grew, so did Healthy Connections. First came Western Arkansas Total Community Health, or W.A.T.C.H. as it was known. It grew to a second location in Mount Ida and then to a location at Acorn Schools. De Queen and Hot Springs followed as services were needed.

Today, Healthy Connections is a thriving and growing organization with clinics and services available all over Arkansas. The footprint stretches as far north as Russellville, as far west as Sheridan, as far south as De Queen, and to our home base in Mena.

“We’re driven by the mission that we can provide quality health care to the population in the areas we serve. That is a population that has been neglected in the past,” said Healthy Connections CEO Tony Calandro. “This population is considered underserved for a lot of services – medical, dental, and behavioral health. We allow them to have easy access, affordable access, to quality health care.”

Healthy Connections providers treat thousands of patients each year who either have no insurance or not have enough insurance to cover essential health, dental, and behavioral health services.

Healthy Connections has become a lot of things to the communities it serves, including primary care providers, dentists, pediatricians, therapists, specialists, and community service workers. But mostly it remains a place the community can receive quality care.

At Healthy Connections, we use our Three Pillars to guide our actions each day.


Community comes first as it is the most visible aspect of the three pillars. We want to serve our communities, but we also want to be part of them. That means high school football Friday nights and local performances downtown. It means community events and positively representing our communities.


No one knows what anyone else has been through or is going through. Our employees strive to show compassion to everyone who walks through the doors of our clinics. This means assisting in whatever way possible to ensure that everyone is welcome and comfortable when they visit us.


We want to be known as an excellent provider. We want to see five-star reviews from our patients after they visit. It is the expectation that we will provide the highest quality, excellent care to everyone who walks through the doors.

Healthy Connections accepts Medicaid, including ArKids 1st, Medicare, and most forms of health and dental insurance. However, no person will be turned away for lack of insurance. Qualified families will be charged according to their total family income and the total number of persons living in the household. This sliding-fee scale allows many to receive treatment who otherwise would not have been able to afford it.

Take Care of Yourself on Self-Care Day

National Self-Care Day is a day dedicated to reminding us all of the importance of taking care of ourselves and our mental well-being. At Evolve Behavioral Health Services, we understand that self-care is an integral part of maintaining a balanced and fulfilling life. On this special day, we invite you to join us in celebrating the power of self-care and explore how our comprehensive mental health services can support you on your journey to improved well-being.

What is National Self-Care Day?

National Self-Care Day, observed on July 24, serves as a reminder to prioritize self-care and mental health. Amidst the fast-paced and often stressful nature of modern life, it is crucial to set aside time to nurture ourselves physically, emotionally, and mentally. It is a day to reflect on our individual needs and engage in activities that promote relaxation, joy, and inner peace.

Why Self-Care Matters

Self-care is not a luxury; it is a necessity. Taking care of your mental health is vital for overall wellness, allowing you to navigate life’s challenges with resilience and strength. Engaging in self-care practices can reduce stress, improve emotional regulation, enhance self-esteem, and foster better relationships with others. It is an investment in your well-being that yields long-term benefits.

Discover Evolve Behavioral Health Services

At Evolve Behavioral Health Services, we are dedicated to providing exceptional mental health support to individuals seeking a path to personal growth and improved mental wellness. Our team of experienced and compassionate professionals offers a range of services designed to meet your unique needs:

1. Individual Therapy:
Personalized one-on-one counseling sessions provide a safe and supportive environment for exploring your thoughts, feelings, and challenges. Our therapists employ evidence-based approaches to address anxiety, depression, trauma, and other mental health concerns.

2. Group Therapy:
Connect with others who may be experiencing similar struggles in a nurturing group setting. Group therapy offers the opportunity to share experiences, gain insights, and build a strong support network.

3. Mindfulness and Stress Management:
Learn valuable techniques to manage stress and incorporate mindfulness into your daily routine. These practices can help you develop a greater sense of self-awareness and inner peace.

4. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT):
Our therapists utilize CBT techniques to assist you in recognizing and challenging negative thought patterns, fostering positive behavioral changes, and improving coping skills.

5. Teletherapy:
For your convenience and privacy, we offer teletherapy sessions, allowing you to receive quality care from the comfort of your own home.

How to Get Started

Taking the first step towards prioritizing your mental health is commendable, and we are here to support you throughout your journey. To learn more about our services and schedule an appointment with one of our caring therapists, please visit our website www.evolvebhs.com or call us at 800-409-6250.


As we celebrate National Self-Care Day, let us be reminded of the importance of nurturing our mental well-being. At Evolve Behavioral Health Services, we are committed to helping you embrace self-care and empowering you to lead a more fulfilling life. Take the leap and invest in yourself—your mental health matters, and we are here to walk alongside you every step of the way. Happy National Self-Care Day!

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical or mental health advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or qualified mental health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical or mental health condition.

June Employees of the Month

Congratulations to our Healthy Connections Shining STAR Employees of the Month for June:




Each month across the Healthy Connections Community Health Network, exemplary employees are nominated for this award for representing our Three Pillars: Excellence, Compassion, and Community. These pillars are considered heavily when choosing winners.

As winners of this Shining STAR award, Amanda and Mandy are winners of a $50 gift card to the HC Hub Company Store.

Amanda is Healthy Connections’ Accounting Manager and she has been with the organization since 2021. Mandy is a Laboratory Technician at the Hot Springs Central clinic. She joined Healthy Connections in 2022.

  • “Amanda’s work is behind the scenes working in accounting/finance, but she is always more than happy to help. She handles all questions, issues, and problems with patience, professionalism, and care. The accounting/finance team is lucky to have a leader and teammate like Amanda.”
  • “Mandy always goes above and beyond to make that we all are comfortable in our jobs. She is always smiling and always has a very positive attitude.”

Congratulations to both Amanda and Mandy.

Thanks again this month to everyone who nominated an employee. There were a lot of great nominations. Do you know who should be our next employees to be recognized? You can nominate them by visiting https://www.healthy-connections.org/nominate.