Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), has announced $131.7 million awarded this month in grant programs that connect youth and families to behavioral health services. Tackling the nation’s ongoing mental health crisis, particularly among our youth, is a top priority of the Biden-Harris Administration and a key pillar in President Biden’s Unity Agenda for the nation.
“These grants enhance the overall health and wellness of children, youth and families. They address the full behavioral continuum by meeting people where they are to ensure they get the support and care that they need,” said Miriam E. Delphin-Rittmon, Ph.D., the HHS Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use, and the leader of SAMHSA. “SAMHSA is committed to using its resources to support children, youth and their families to get the help they need to thrive.”
The $131.7 million in awards this month include:
- $5.7 million for Planning and Developing Infrastructure to Promote the Mental Health of Children, Youth and Families in American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) Communities. This program provides Tribes and Tribal organizations with tools and resources to plan and design a family-driven, community-based and culturally and linguistically competent system of care (SOC).
- $5.5 million for Cooperative Agreements for School-Based Trauma-Informed Support Services and Mental Health Care for Children and Youth. This program increases student access to evidence-based and culturally relevant trauma support services and mental health care by developing innovative initiatives, activities and programs to link local school systems with local trauma-informed support and mental health systems, including those under the Indian Health Service.
- $2.4 million for Linking Actions for Unmet Needs in Children’s Health (Project LAUNCH). This program promotes the wellness of young children, from birth to 8 years of age, by addressing the social, emotional, cognitive, physical and behavioral aspects of their development, as well as preparing them to thrive in school and beyond. The awards will also provide local communities or tribes with resources to disseminate effective and innovative early childhood mental health practices and services.
- $16.4 million for Healthy Transitions: Improving Life Trajectories for Youth and Young Adults with Serious Mental Disorders Program. This program improves and expands access to developmentally, culturally and linguistically appropriate services and supports for transition-aged youth and young adults (ages 16–25) who either have, or are at risk for developing, serious mental health conditions. Award recipients will identify and provide appropriate behavioral health interventions to transition-aged youth and young adults who have or are at risk for a serious emotional disturbance (SED) or serious mental illness.
- $41.2 million for Grants to Expand Substance Abuse Treatment Capacity in Adult and Family Treatment Drug Courts. This program expands substance use disorder (SUD) treatment and recovery support services in existing drug courts. The program recognizes the need for treatment instead of incarceration for individuals with SUDs. These awards provide a continuum of care, including prevention, harm reduction, treatment, and recovery services, for individuals with SUD involved with the courts. Family drug court awards include an added focus on family preservation and promoting the wellness of the family.
- $48.3 million for Grants for Expansion and Sustainability of the Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children with Serious Emotional Disturbances (System of Care SOC Expansion and Sustainability). This program provides resources to improve the mental health outcomes for children and youth, birth through age 21, at risk for or with SEDs, and their families. This program supports the implementation, expansion and integration of the SOC approach by creating sustainable infrastructure and services.
- $1.8 million for Preventing Youth Overdose: Treatment, Recovery, Education, Awareness and Training. This program improves local awareness among youth of risks associated with fentanyl, increases access to medications for opioid use disorder (MOUD) for adolescents and young adults screened for and diagnosed with opioid use disorder (OUD) and trains health care providers, families and school personnel on best practices for supporting children, adolescents and young adults with OUD and those taking MOUD.
- $8.7 million for Behavioral Health Partnership for Early Diversion of Adults and Youth. This program establishes or expands programs that divert adults and youth with a mental illness or a co-occurring disorder from the criminal or juvenile justice system to community-based mental health and SUD and other supports prior to arrest and booking.
- $1.7 million for Family Counseling and Support for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Intersex+ Youth and Their Families. This program prevents health and behavioral health risks (e.g., suicide, depression, homelessness, drug use, HIV) and promotes well-being for LGBTQI+ youth in the context of their families/caregivers, cultures and communities by establishing LGBTQI+ family counseling and support programs and training providers on family counseling and support interventions.
If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or chat at 988lifeline.org. To learn how to get support for mental health, drug or alcohol issues, visit FindSupport.gov. If you are ready to locate a treatment facility or provider, you can go directly to FindTreatment.gov or call 800-662-HELP (4357).