Casey’s philosophy is to provide community-based, family-focused, strengths-based, culturally competent services in a comprehensive way. They put it to the test in the Mental Health Initiative for Urban Children demonstration project. This project not only provided mental health services to children in high poverty, urban communities, it worked with states to improve the policies, practices and funding supporting these services. This evaluation reports on the quality and effectiveness of unique service delivery strategies during the initiative.
Family Resource Centers provide culturally competent, accessible, non-stigmatizing environment
Findings & Stats
Family input drove service delivery to be culturally competent and family-centered.
Drugs, violence and unemployment were consistent community factors exacerbating mental health issues.
It was very difficult to change the traditional, bureaucratic service delivery in institutionalized state and local agencies.
Initiative implementation became so complex it was difficult for sites to coordinate and manage Casey’s expectations.
Statements & Quotations
With the help of technical assistant providers each of the sites carefully researched various service model options that might possibly meet their site’s service needs. Interestingly, all four sites independently arrived at service strategies that included three major service components: 1) Family Resource Centers, 2) Community Outreach, and 3) Intensive Case Management.
One of the benefits of having residents as part of service delivery was that they helped to redefine what mental health meant to residents in the target neighborhoods. There was a distinction between residents’ definition of mental health and the state, provider and other non-community stakeholders’ definition of mental health. This distinction was
reflected succinctly in the residents’ emphasis on more preventive and supportive services, as opposed to the provider/state emphasis on more intervention and intensive type services.