August 2017
Federation in Action 
Message from Executive Director, Lynda Gargan

On a beautiful, spring day as Kathy Holsopple, ED for VFFCMH, and I were talking in my office, our conversation drifted into our personal visions for our futures. Kathy talked about her desire to relocate from Vermont to Virginia, specifically to a rural area of Virginia where her family could maintain a farm lifestyle. And, of course, such a move would require being able to secure employment. And, there was the reality that Kathy had never visited the area and had no personal connections. Our conversation lingered into dinner and Kathy shared more and more details about the vision she had for her family in rural Virginia. We both agreed that it was a wonderful idea which would require a lot of determination and our evening drifted on to other topics.


A few weeks ago I received a call from Kathy, sharing with me that she was leaving VFFCMH in August to head to Farmville, VA  where she will be taking the helm of a Crisis Pregnancy Program. As she spoke of how every detail of her dream fell into place, I felt a sense of admiration mixed with the excitement that we can all achieve our dreams if we are focused and determined and maintain a positive attitude while always moving forward.


Congratulations, Kathy, as you and your family begin this exciting journey!

 Representing You
  • Lynda recently represented NFFCMH as a panelist for the Office of Special Education Programs 2017 National Leadership Conference. As a speaker for  “The Value of Engaging Stakeholders From Data Collection To Reporting And Use”, Lynda had the opportunity to educate Special Education Administrators and Evaluators from around the country about the importance of engaging with families and family run organizations.

  • NFFCMH is serving as faculty for West Virginia’s Peer Policy Academy as the state begins to develop their family and youth peer support services. WV is in the process of creating a vision that would create these services and supports through an inclusive lens that focuses on the unique cultural and geographical challenges that are inherent in the state.

  • The  Federation participated in and encouraged your participation in HHS's July 27th Public Stakeholder Listening Session on Strategies for Improving Parity for Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Coverage.

  • The Federation has partnered with other national organizations in advocating and educating legislators. The Federation was part of the letter of support for the CHIP Mental Health Support Bill HR 3192 to Representative Joseph Kennedy.
  • The Federation actively represents you as part of the Mental Health Liaison Group and its budget recommendations to the President

  • The Federation signed in in support of the bill by Congressman Gallagher (R-WI) and Congressman Davis (D-IL) introduced H. Res. 443 “Recognizing the importance and effectiveness of trauma-informed care.” The resolution affirms the trauma-informed culture shift that we know improves program outcomes and helps trauma survivors that have struggled with behavioral health concerns in the aftermath. The resolution calls for the designation of a “National Trauma Awareness Month” and a “National Trauma Informed Awareness Day” during the awareness month to highlight community resilience through trauma-informed change.

SAMHSA'S FY 2018 Budget as
Proposed in the President's Budget
Opportunities to Highlight Your Agency Nationally and Partner with the Federation
SAMHSA Report to Congress on System of Care Grants

Is your agency currently working with a System of Care Grant from SAMHSA? Do you have a family that has greatly benefited from their participation and would be willing to talk about their experience? We would love to interview them for the Family stories section of the report to Congress.
Contact Michelle Covington at
Partnership with the Federation on the  Creation of Toolkit for Family Engagement in Evaluation
The Federation is working with WestStat to create a Family Engagement in Evaluation ToolKit. How have you engaged families successfully in evaluation? We need your expertise and want to highlight your work in a National Toolkit.
Contact us by 8/6 to be part of this
exciting project!
28th National Conference
The only national conference dedicated solely to issues that impact children, youth and young adults with behavioral health challenges and their families.  Our conference focus is inclusive of children and youth who experience complex diagnostic challenges.
The National Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health invites you to establish your company as a mental health leader by securing your sponsorship at this year’s National Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health’s 28th Annual Conference.

As your trusted partner, the National Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health provides sponsors with numerous opportunities to increase brand visibility, establish thought leadership, and directly access hundreds of potential customers and strategic partners. We work tirelessly to ensure that our sponsors’ business goals are being met.

Deadline for sponsor registration is September 30, 2017

NOVEMBER 9 - 12,


Gary M. Blau - 
 the Chief of the Child, Adolescent and Family Branch of the Center for Mental Health Services

Mike Veny -
one of America's leading mental health speakers and a  high energy drum circle facilitator
Federation Welcomes 
As a New Affiliate
The Children, Youth & Family Liaison (CYF Liaison)   is a team of dedicated people who have either lived with or supported a loved one who lives with mental illness and/or addiction.  They express the authentic voice and values of families engaged with the San Diego County Behavioral Health Services by bringing feedback from families to the County Administration. The CYF Liaison also takes information on best practices, programs and support from the County and makes sure it gets to San Diego families. They serve as the link (the liaison!) between the community and the providers.  The Children, Youth & Family Liaison provides an informative website, blog posts, Free workshops, webinars and training events, speakers and focus groups so families can find the help they need, and learn to use their own voice to assist their family’s return to a state of positive health
As New Executive Leadership

NFFCMH Welcomes Cindy Tabor as the new Executive Director for the Vermont Federation of Families for Children’s Mental HealthPlease join us as we welcome Cindy to her new position. Cindy has been a part of VFFCMH for the past 11 years, where she has served as Assistant Director. Cindy can be reached at

NFFCMH Welcomes Eve Bleyhl  as the new Executive Director for the Nebraska Family Support Network. 
Please join us as we welcome Eve to her new position. Eve has been a part of NSFN where she has served as Program Director. Eve can be reached at

Reciprocity, Certification and Reimbursement Activities
The Federation has been working to advance reciprocity for certification, as well as to reach out to states about Medicaid reimbursement for Parent Support Providers. In August, the Federation will be hosting learning sessions for state decision makers based on their state's specific level readiness.  As an affiliate, if you are interested in participating in the session with your state key partners, please let us know. 
Family/Parent Peer Support: National Certification and Reciprocity Webinar
August 25
Participate in this webinar to learn about the National Certification for Parent Support Partners (Family/Parent Peer Support) and Reciprocity.  This webinar is intended to provide provider certification/training information to states who already provide or who are just starting to provide Family/Parent Peer Support as a Medicaid service.    National Certification is an option for meeting Medicaid requirements while also allowing for portability throughout all states adopting the model.  Standardization and certification of training adds a level of protection of families receiving services.  This practice will be elevated to a level of accountability that encourages reimbursement sustainability and validates Family/Parent Peer Support as a job category in the healthcare field.
  The objectives of this webinar include:
•  Initiate dialogue regarding Family/Parent Peer Support reciprocity between state and national certification
• Initiate interest in utilizing the national certification and examination in addition to or in lieu of creating a state certification process
•  Identify sources of  funding sustainability
Family/Parent Peer Support: Effectiveness and Sustainability
August 29
Participate in this webinar to learn about Family/Parent Peer Support and the benefits of this service for families.  This webinar is designed for states that may provide some form of Family/Parent Peer Support yet do not have formal certification requirements, sources of sustainable funding such as Medicaid, or for those states that do not provide the service.  We will discuss how other states have adopted this service.  Outcomes and Core Competencies of the service will be discussed as well as National Certification and Reciprocity.
  The objectives of this webinar include:
•  Define Family/Parent Peer Support
• Outline the benefits and outcomes of Family/Parent Peer Support
•  Describe funding options for sustainability
• Describe necessary administrative functions to meet funding options
•  Describe National Core Competencies
• Outline National Certification & Reciprocity
• Outline credentialing and training for effective models
Upcoming Webinars
Children's Mental Health Initiative (CMHI) National Evaluation Web Event Training Series will host 

Using a Trauma-Informed Approach for Evaluation 

on Thursday, Aug. 3, at 1 p.m. ET.

Presenters will discuss trauma issues in evaluation from the perspective of youth and families from whom data is collected. This webinar also will identify techniques for data collection that use a trauma-informed approach.

Unite to Protect Behavioral Health: Advocacy Webinar Series
Wed, Aug 2, 2017 3:00 PM ET
Wed, Aug 16, 2017 3:00 PM ET
Wed, Aug 30, 2017 3:00 PM ET

With numerous emerging threats to Medicaid and behavioral health services, the National Council will hold biweekly policy webinars to update our members on the latest news and advocacy opportunities out of Washington. They monitor and update on issues that matter most, including: the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act, proposed reforms to Medicaid and details on government spending for behavioral health care programs.

Success Stories: Implementing Behavioral Health in a Specialty Care Setting
August 16, 2017
2:00pm- 3:30pm EDT

J oin CIHS for a  webinar  to learn about a successful partnership between a hospital system and an oncology practice, which has woven behavioral health screening and treatment into their practice, and the lessons they have learned along the way.

In this webinar, participants will:
  • Learn about common co-morbid conditions seen in specialty care settings
  • Gain best practices in identifying and treating behavioral health needs in specialty care settings
  • Receive tools and resources to help develop similar programming

The TA Network's Cultural and Linguistic Competency YouTube Playlist has several previously recorded LCs that address historical trauma, racial/ethnic identity development, and behavioral health help-seeking behaviors that many minority communities experience. 

NIH Research Study: Depression in Teenagers

Study seeks to understand the causes of depression in teenagers.  As part of a larger study looking at mood dysregulation, this part of the study is currently recruiting medically healthy teenagers ages 12 to 17, who meet the criteria for major depressive disorder, and are in treatment with a physician. Study participation begins with an initial 1-day evaluation. Research visits may include annual outpatient visits up to age 25, and/or a 4- to 15-week inpatient treatment.  Call 1-301-496-8381 [TTY: 1-866-411-1010], Email

IEP Resources From

  • IEP binder checklist 
  • School contact sheet 
  • Parent-school communication log 
  • IEP goal tracker 

Funding Opportunities

The Annie E. Casey Foundation is seeking proposals from  communities interested in implementing Evidence2Success, a framework that brings public system and resident leaders together to improve child well-being. 
Application Deadline: Aug. 4, 2017
Initiation of a Mental Health Family Navigator Model to Promote Early Access, Engagement and Coordination of Needed Mental Health Services for Children and Adolescents. The NIH is seeking applicants to develop and test navigator models' ability to promote early access, engagement and coordination of mental health treatment and services for children and adolescents.  
Application Deadline: Jan. 7, 2018

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is accepting applications for pilot studies on the effectiveness and implementation of family navigator models designed to promote early access, engagement and coordination of mental health treatment and services for children and adolescents who are experiencing early symptoms of mental health problems.  

Application Deadline: Jan. 7, 2018