“Wraparound” Services for Children with Intensive Needs:
Child Focused • Family Centered • Community Based
Maryland has been overly dependent upon a crisis-driven system of expensive, out-of-home residential care for children with complex needs. We miss opportunities to prevent crisis and help children because this rigid system is costly and poorly focused on short-term solutions. When the child returns home, we have treated the symptom, but the underlying complex problems remain.
- $1 million for the development and implementation of new “wraparound” programs in Montgomery County and Baltimore City.
- The programs will serve severely emotionally disturbed children.
- Behavioral, educational, and mental health needs will be assessed simultaneously.
- Children will be placed in the wraparound based upon their assessed needs, regardless of the State agency they first contact.
- Children and their families will be supported in their homes and communities by a team of professionals and persons close to the child with individually developed plans of care.
- Each team will have broad flexibility within a fixed budget to assemble and purchase a tailored package of services – public or private.
- The goal: long-term stability of the child and family in the community without the need for perpetual state intervention.
- Expansion to additional jurisdictions and populations will be guided by the experiences of these demonstration programs. The Children’s Cabinet, the Governor’s Office for Children, Youth and Families, and their local partners will continually assess performance and determine best practices in order to bring the wraparound practice to all children in need.
- These wraparound programs will be the foundation for a statewide, integrated system of care. This system will deliver comprehensive spectrum of services to meet the multiple and always changing needs of children and their families. Key features of this system will be:
- Locally-managed, community-based wraparound programs, working as part of a coordinated network of state and local services.
- Serving children referred from the state’s child serving agencies – Human Resources, Juvenile Services, Education and Health and Mental Hygiene.
- Providing individualized, family-centered services based on the particular needs of the child and family and delivered in their home and community.