Who We Are
The Children’s Mental Health Network provides weekly news and unbiased analysis of key issues focused on children, youth and families’ mental health and well-being. The Network reaches a widely diverse audience. Readers and contributors to the Network come from all walks of life – parents, youth, community leaders, policy-makers, state and federal officials, and increasingly, similar groups from countries across the globe. Common among all who are involved with the Network is the expressed need for a single source that can effectively distill the high volume of information about issues that impact children and youth with emotional and behavioral challenges and their families in a way that makes sense in its most simplified form, focusing on the key elements requiring action and involvement.
- By most estimates, as many as 1 in 5 children have a diagnosable mental disorder. For nearly two million of those children, this means extreme functional impairment. And, serious mental illness in adults often begins during adolescence.
This time in history is burgeoning with possibility to improve the care of children and youth with emotional and behavioral challenges and their families. Rapidly shifting change is occurring across multiple, diverse arenas, including: health care reform, emerging research, changing service delivery systems, and increased public awareness. Interest has exploded beyond the boundaries of “the children’s mental health field” to now include immigrant groups, global families, law enforcement, third culture youth and much, much more.
While guilds, advocacy groups, and federal grants have fulfilled important roles in disseminating information specific to their scopes of focus, there now exists a need for cutting edge news and analysis exclusively focused on children and youth with emotional and behavioral challenges and their families that is readily accessible to all interested parties. There exists a need for unbiased analysis, helping people understand the implications of policy decisions being made at the state and national level and the impact that has on their families and in their communities to help them be a part of participating in discussions and influencing decisions shaping the future of children’s mental health. There exists a need for impartial, balanced information unencumbered and unlimited by government or other influential funding. Stakeholder populations, never before connected, need access to a broad assortment of topics and perspectives in order to inform their participation and influence fair and effective progress.
The Children’s Mental Health Network endeavors to fill this gap by providing factual, non-partisan, up-to-date information singularly focused on children’s mental health care and the systems and structures in which that care is provided.
The Children’s Mental Health Network informs people about changes in legislation and policy, synthesizing sources and perspectives to offer future scenarios for implementation and practice. The Children’s Mental Health Network focuses attention on what is emerging and how individuals, programs, and systems can best prepare in ways that ensure maximal benefit for children, youth and families. The Children’s Mental Health Network provides a platform, through its website and blogs, for otherwise obscure stories of local success and innovation. The Network connects disparate groups of stakeholders and gives them access to one another’s perspectives, needs and concerns, with the strong abiding belief that there are examples of success across the Nation and the globe worth sharing and replicating.
The Network is not only a critical source of information for all people concerned with children’s mental health, it is indeed, an essential element in eliciting broader, more diverse, democratic participation in the creation of better policies and systems for children with mental health needs.