This project brings together the state's three largest cities (Boston, Worcester, and Springfield) and several state agencies to implement the strategic plan developed through a SAMHSA-funded SOC Planning Project. The Springfield Department of Health and Human Services (SDHHS) serves as lead agency locally for the Springfield Young Children's System of Care (YCSOC). SDHHS manages a contract with a community mental health service provider (Gandara Center), to implement the direct service component of the grant for young children in Springfield.

The project has a two-fold purpose. (a) To expand and strengthen the local young children's mental health system of care to better engage the primarily local institutions which already serve young children, ensure early detection and appropriate intervention for children up to age 6, better serve the families of young children with serious emotional disturbances and provide a detailed roadmap for integrating efforts across the multiple sectors that engage young children and families. (b) To demonstrate a replicable and sustainable model for local mental health service delivery that is integrated with the existing state system, and use lessons learned from the project to influence major statewide improvements in the system of care for young children with serious emotional disturbances and their families.

Staff contact information:

Justin Chellman, Program Coordinator, (413) 787-6724(p); (413) 787-6458(p);



Target Population

  • Public Health, primary care, mental health care, schools, early childhood providers and parents.
  • Direct service component of the grant: focus is on families with children age 0 through 6 that have serious emotional disturbances.
Page last updated:  Wednesday, November 28, 2018 09:55 am