Family education and support services in systems of care
This study examines the use of family education and support (FES) services within community-based mental health systems. Using data from the national evaluation of the Children’s Mental Health Initiative (CMHI), 2,853 caregivers and their children ages 6 to 18 years from 39 communities participated in this study. The findings indicated that during the first 6 months of entry into services, one third of families received FES services, and the clinical characteristics of children whose families received FES services were found to be more severe at intake into services with significantly higher internalizing and externalizing problems and significantly lower strengths than those families who did not. Similarly, caregivers who received FES services entered services experiencing more strain. The findings have implications for the impact of FES services on children.