In July 2012, representatives from the PA System of Care Partnership , Youth and Family Training Institute, and all the counties implementing Systems of Care in Pennsylvania attended the biennial Training Institutes sponsored by the National Technical Assistance Center for Children’s Mental Health at Georgetown University. Individuals attended various workshops and trainings throughout the week and contributed to a report highlighting their shared learning.
On June 23, the Pennsylvania System of Care Partnership hosted a training entitled Building Systems of Care: A Primer for the System of Care partner counties and learning communities: Erie, Montgomery, Lehigh, Chester, York and Philadelphia Counties. Shelia Pires, the lead trainer and founding partner of the Human Services Collaborative, Washington, D.C., described the structural components of a System of Care and strategies on how to transform existing systems in partnership with youth and families. The audience included 60 partner county participants representing child welfare, mental health, drug and alcohol and juvenile justice services as well as youth and family leaders, who are integral to the youth driven and family driven framework of a System of Care. Each group of county participants worked collaboratively to complete team exercises on resource assessment, measurement and evaluation. The primer training is designed to provide county leadership teams with the fundamental tools and resources to successfully implement and sustain a System of Care.
Through a six-year Cooperative Agreement funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) the PA System of Care Partnership will transform the way that categorical systems at the state and county levels serve youth and families who have complex needs and are involved in mental health plus child welfare, and/or juvenile justice. Over the next five years, the PA System of Care Partnership will work with 15 counties, chosen via an application process. Each partner county will build a system that includes High Fidelity Wraparound, the practice model defined by the National Wraparound Initiative, to serve at least 25 youth annually from the population of focus. High Fidelity Wraparound is also the practice model being implemented by the Youth and Family Training Institute.
The goal of the PA System of Care Partnership is that these counties transform their systems, using a structured, youth driven and family driven approach to effectively meet the needs of youth and families in their communities. With demonstrated success, the SOC partnership plans to lead the way for Pennsylvania to expand the structured approach to System of Care development to all counties.
Additional information and photos from the training.