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New Regions Added to the System to Enhance Early Development

The Kentucky System to Enhance Early Development (SEED) recently added three new Regional Interagency Councils to its service area to enhance services and supports for children with mental health needs. SEED, a program administered by the Department for Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities (BHDID) in the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS), has added the Gateway, FIVCO and Bluegrass East regions to its service area.

Last year, SEED entered into a $9 million, six-year cooperative agreement with the federal government to further address the mental health needs of young children and began serving the Jefferson, Salt River and Bluegrass regions. The goal of the program is to enhance the existing service delivery system to better meet the social, emotional and behavioral needs of children from birth to age 5 and their families by increasing access to high-quality integrated services and supports in communities across Kentucky.

“SEED is helping expand our services to more children across Kentucky, making sure they are getting the care they need and their unique talents and abilities are being nurtured,” said CHFS Secretary Janie Miller. “We are focused on enhancing existing services and, ultimately, helping our young people thrive in their communities.”

The agreement with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) supports the state’s nationally recognized work in developing systems of care for children with mental health and substance abuse issues and their families and gives the program the opportunity to expand to more regions.

“We are extremely pleased with the development of SEED and the expansion of our capabilities,” said BHDID Commissioner Stephen Hall. “We truly believe the system of care approach provides the best, most complete array of services for children and gives them the opportunity to grow and develop into healthy individuals.”

Since 1998, Kentucky has received three awards through this federal program, totaling $25 million. Each project has allowed Kentucky the opportunity to improve and expand its system of care by focusing on different populations and geographic areas.

The most current round of funding is being used to build state and local infrastructure, and to support service expansion, training and coaching of service providers, and program evaluation. The project involves partnerships among the State Interagency Council, multiple state and local child-serving agencies and community partners, and the Kentucky Partnership for Families and Children.

A system of care is a coordinated network of community-based services and supports that are organized to meet the needs of children and youth with mental health challenges and their families. The system of care philosophy can be applied to all children and youth who are at-risk, and their families, to promote social and emotional health.

 

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