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NAMI’s Child & Adolescent Action Center: Discussion Groups; Research, Services & Treatment; Federal & State Policy Legislation; Schools & Education; Juvenile Justice & Child Welfare; and Parents, Caregivers & Youth.

How to advocate for you child, 25 Tips for Parents

Evidence-Based Mental Health Treatment for Children and Adolescents: the information on this website is offered as a completely free service to families and mental health professionals to help ensure that children and adolescents benefit from the most up-to-date information about mental health treatment.

The Parents’ How-To Guide to Children’s Mental Health Services in Massachusetts, The Boston Bar Association, with support from Children’s Hospital Boston, has developed the guide to Services in Massachusetts, which answers all of these questions and more. It takes you through the mental health system step by step, from deciding if your child needs care to getting specific services.

Dealing with your child’s mental illnessKenneth Duckworth, MD, Psychiatrist, Professor at Harvard & Medical Director for NAMI (Video)

Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative under MassHealth The Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative (CBHI) is an interagency initiative of the Commonwealth’s Executive Office of Health and Human Services whose mission is to strengthen, expand and integrate Massachusetts state services into a comprehensive, community-based system of care, to ensure that families and their children with significant behavioral, emotional and mental health needs obtain the services necessary for success in home, school and community.

Grants for Children’s Healthcare Treatments. The United Healthcare Children’s Foundation is seeking grant applications from families in need of financial assistance to help pay for their child’s health care treatments, services or equipment not covered, or not fully covered, by their commercial health insurance plan. To be eligible for a grant, children must be 16 years of age or younger, families must meet economic guidelines, reside in the United States and have a commercial health insurance plan. Qualifying families can receive up to $5,000 to help pay for medical services and equipment such as physical, occupational and speech therapy, counseling services, surgeries, prescriptions, wheelchairs, orthotics, eyeglasses and hearing aids.  Grants are available for medical expenses families have incurred 60 days prior to the date of application as well as for ongoing and future medical needs. Parents or legal guardians may apply for grants.

Worried About Your Child?  Symptom Checker provided by Child Mind Institute. Many psychiatric and learning disorders have symptoms in common, and several disorders may be suggested by the symptoms you select. This tool is not a substitute for a complete diagnostic evaluation by a trained mental health professional.

Black Mental Health Alliance of Massachusetts is a membership organization that is committed to improving the quality of mental healthcare among blacks, ethnic minorities, disadvantaged people and the poor. We work through our membership and provide professional development, community health education, advocacy, research and partnerships with individuals, groups, organizations, both public and private, along with Federal, state and private agencies. We serve as the primary and collective voice of Black Americans, ethnic cultural groups and poor people who may not be represented at the mental health policy table in Massachusetts.

RosieD Reforming the Mental Health System in Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Housing and Shelter Alliance hope that this Young Adult Resource Guide will be used by school psychologists, guidance counselors, and librarians; health professionals, who address the mental and physical well-being of young people; legislators and public officials dedicated to connecting youth to needed services; parents, teachers, and religious leaders, who guide youth each day; and, of course, young people, who are seeking the kinds of resources.

MNIP Parent Resources Fact Sheet for parents of children with disabilities and special health care needs.

Children’s Trust Fund leads efforts in Massachusetts to ensure that all parents of young children have access to community-based family support resources and the information about child development that they need.

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) was established to improve access to care, treatment, and services for traumatized children and adolescents exposed to traumatic events.

The Pediatric IOCDF Committee is focused on the specific needs of OCD-affected children and youth, and their family members. The website provides information and to answer common questions asked by youth and their parents, treatment providers and teachers.

The ARCH National Respite Network includes the National Respite Locator, a service to help caregivers and professionals locate respite services in their community.

The Massachusetts Family-to-Family Health Information Center, is a FREE parent-run project at the Federation for Children with Special Needs, that advises families on how to receive benefits and to qualify and apply for MassHealth. In addition, they assist families with children and youth with special healthcare needs in accessing public and private health insurance benefits, community resources, offer a listserv, an annual family conference, conference calls, and  host workshops about healthcare financing. Contact project director Beth Dworetzky at 1-800-331-0688, ext. 210 or massfv@fcsn.org.

The Federation for Children with Special Needs provides information, support, and assistance to parents of children with disabilities, their professional partners, and their communities. Most Federation staff members are parents or family members of children with disabilities and people with disabilities.

Moving to Young Adult Life: A Legal Guide for Parents of Youth with Mental Health Needs (PDF) Legal-Guide-Order-Form (PDF) prepared by Parent/Professional Advocacy League

Family Initiatives: Employment Options currently offers a continuum of three programs for parents with mental illness and their families. The Family Options Program reflects an integration of the strengths-based, recovery and empowerment-oriented principles and evidence-based practices, of Psychiatric Rehabilitation and wraparound in children’s systems of care. The program has a fundamental commitment to understanding and responding to recovery as a family experience and provides direct service, advocacy, and training. The Family Project provides support for building and maintaining family relationships for non-custodial parents, including supervised visitation. The Clubhouse Family Legal Support Project offers legal advice and representation for parents working toward increased contact with their children, and effective use of their custodial rights: as well as training for attorney’s statewide about the legal issues of parental mental illness.

Planning for Life After Special Education in Massachusetts – Second Edition

Disability Resource Guide from the Pediatric Family Resource Library at the UMass Memorial Children’s Medical Center

Mass. Housing & Shelter Alliance_Young_Adult_Resource_Guide_Final_2011

The Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities has developed a wide-ranging collection of resources for the field.  Our knowledge translation activities include peer reviewed publications in national journals, nearly one hundred toolkits, monographs, and guidebooks designed to provide policy and practical guidance to consumers and providers working to expand community participation, and a catalogue of exemplary programs.  All of these can be accessed here, at no cost. The UPenn Collaborative on Community Integration is A Rehabilitation Research & Training Center Promoting Communitytion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities, funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation rch (NIDRR). For more information, please visit us at: http://tucollaborative.org/resources/resources.html

Preventing Custody Loss: Suggestions for Parents with Psychiatric Disabilities


Parenting Education and Support Programs (PESP) bring together parents in structured training programs to increase their skills, offer access to information, and to create support networks in communities. Programs address the needs of diverse groups, including grandparents, fathers, single parents, and parents with disabilities.

Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, programs and services

Dept. of Children and Families, Family Services

Dept. of Children and Families, Youth Services

Think:Kids is a non-profit organization that trains adults in a new way of helping kids with social, emotional, and behavioral challenges: Outpatient Family Services and Support Groups More Support Groups

Sociedad Latina, viene trabajando con los jóvenes latinos como una manera de contribuir al desarrollo de la nueva generación de líderes

Parent/Professional Advocacy League, (PAL) advocates for supports, treatments and policies that enable families to live in their communities in an environment of stability and respect.

National Federation for Families for Children’s Mental Health (FFCMH), a national family-run organization dedicated exclusively to helping children with mental health needs and their families achieve a better quality of life.

Families for Depression Awareness, helps families recognize and cope with depressive disorders to get people well and prevent suicides

Child Mind Institute is dedicated to transforming mental health care for children everywhere. The organization is committed to finding more effective treatments for childhood psychiatric and learning disorders, building the science of healthy brain development, and empowering children and their families with help, hope, and answers. The Child Mind Institute does not accept funding from the pharmaceutical industry.

The Council for Exceptional Children, the voice and vision of special education.

National Organizations and Information Groups are an invaluable source of information.

Experience Journal: Pediatric Depression

BPChildren is dedicated to erasing stigma and helping children with bipolar disorder.

The Juvenile Bipolar Research Foundation raises and distributes funds for the most promising research into the causes, treatment, and prevention of early-onset bipolar disorder.

Reactive Attachment Disorder: http://www.radkid.org , http://www.attach.org/

Children with PTSD

Children and Adults with ADHD

The Balanced Mind Foundation

National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities

National Organization on Disability, it’s ability not disability that counts

National Center for Learning Disabilities

Where To Find Help For Your Child – from the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

Urban Partnership Resources and Information on Disability and Education (Urban PRIDE) is a not-for-profit organization and community resource center founded in 1997 to empower and support parents of children with disabilities in inner city Boston to improve the lives of children at home, in school and in the community. We aim to improve the availability of and access to culturally responsive disability related support, information, and training for culturally and linguistically diverse families who have children with disabilities, as well as young adults with disabilities in urban Boston.

Wrights Law The Special Ed Advocate is a free online newsletter about special education legal and advocacy topics. Subscribers learn about new cases, articles, seminars and training, special offers on books by Pete & Pam Wright, and other useful information about special education law and advocacy.

Special Education Activism, working to secure the educational rights of all Massachusetts schoolchildren with disabilities.

The Sibling Support Project is a national effort dedicated to the life-long concerns of brothers and sisters of people who have special health, developmental, or mental health concerns. community-based peer support programs for young siblings; hosting workshops, listservs, and websites for young and adult siblings; and increasing parents’ and providers’ awareness of siblings’ unique, lifelong, and ever-changing concerns through workshops, websites, and written materials. Find a sibshop near you

SibNet is the Internet’s first and largest groups for adult brothers and sisters of people with special health, developmental, and emotional needs.

Sibnet Facebook group for adult siblings

SibTeen Facebook group

SibTeen Yahoogroup

SibKids Yahoogroup

Connect with other adult sibs in your community

Resilient Siblings Group: For girls ages 12-16 who have siblings struggling with emotional, behavioral, or developmental challenges. This group will provide a safe and supportive environment for siblings to connect, explore, and share their unique experiences together, such as witnessing sibling hospitalizations, changes in mood and behavior, and the destabilizing effect illness can have on the entire family. The group will emphasize building resilience through group discussion and activities, expressive art, cooperative projects, and psychoeducation.  The girls will build skills for healthy coping with techniques informed by Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT).  Periodic parent meetings will provide parents with information about the group’s progress, guidance and support, as well as a place for parents to give feedback, make suggestions, and offer input. Individual parent meetings can be arranged upon request.

The group will be led by Lizzy Green.  Lizzy is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker at the Brookline Community Mental Health Center, where she co-coordinates the Child and Adolescent Group Therapy Program. Lizzy works with individual children and families, provides parent guidance and psychoeducation, and leads groups for children.

The group is held at the Brookline Community Mental Health Center Thursdays from 5:00 – 5:50 PM. When possible, the group will be billed through insurance. For those unable to use their insurance, a fee will be set on a sliding scale. For more info, or to make a referral, please contact: Lizzy Green, LCSW at (617) 734-3443 ext. 256 or green3321@gmail.com

Grandparents can get help from the Department of Elder Affairs which recently updated their Resource Guide for grandparents raising their grandchildren.

You can learn all about bullying and what you can do to stop it. Take a look around and you’ll find games and cartoon webisodes that help you Take a Stand. Lend a Hand. Stop Bullying Now! For Kids For Teens For Parents For Educators For Community

After Schools Initiative: a comprehensive resource for afterschool information.

Bullying and Cyberbullying (Word)

Olweus Bullying Prevention Program

Boys and Girls Club of Boston, Youth Service Providers Network

YMCA of Greater Boston, programs offers healthy, fun and educational programs for toddlers, youth, teens, adults and older adults

FEDERAL GUIDE TO HELP PARENTS MAKE SAFE CHOICES WHEN CHOOSING A RESIDENTIAL TREATMENT PROGRAM FOR THEIR CHILDREN – The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has released the first-ever federal consumer guide to assist parents in choosing a safe residential treatment program for their children. The guide was issued as part of FTC’s investigation into the deceptive marketing practices of some residential treatment programs, which was requested by Rep. George Miller (D-CA): http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/products/pro27.pdf

RAINN (Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network): The nation’s largest anti-sexual assault organization. Click on the local organization’s name to get the contact info and website:

The Trauma Center is a program of Justice Resource Institute (JRI) , a large nonprofit organization dedicated to social justice by offering hope and promise of fulfillment to children, adults, and families who are at risk of not receiving effective services essential to their safety, progress, and/or survival.

Victims of Violence (VOV) Program of Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA) 617-591-6360

MASSACHUSETTS: Domestic Violence Resources

Massachusetts Office Of Victim  Assistance Help Directory

In the Aftermath of Crime: A Guide to Victim Rights and Services in Massachusetts (Download PDF)

National Teen Dating Abuse Hotline

Violence Against People: Domestic Violence Resource Library Abuse can take many forms and can affect many different people, no matter their race, sex or socioeconomic status. Sadly, millions of people are repeatedly abused each year, and often, the victims remain hidden and live with the abuse in secret. Education and empowerment are essential to helping prevent domestic and other forms of abuse from occurring. There are many different types of abuse, including physical, non-physical emotional, verbal, and financial/economic abuse.