Behavioral Health Disaster Responders, or "crisis counselors," provide a short-term intervention with individuals and/or groups experiencing psychological reactions to a major emergency and/or disaster and its aftermath.

This type of intervention is not therapy in the traditional mental health sense — responders (or 'counselors') link victims to disaster relief associations within the shortest amount of time while assessing victims for their need for counseling services. A typical intervention may include a referral to services, support, or food and shelter.

For more information about the Massachusetts Behavioral Health Disaster Responders, please contact Liam Seward, Chief of Staff, Massachusetts Department of Mental Health at 617-626-8170 or If you would like to register to volunteer as a behavioral health disaster responder in Massachusetts, please visit

Links of Interest

This information is provided by Emergency Preparedness within the Department of Public Health.