All systems of care are family driven and youth guided, community based, and culturally and linguistically competent.
Family-driven means families have a primary decision-making role in determining the policies and procedures governing care for all children in the community, as well as determining the effectiveness of all efforts to promote the mental health and well-being of children and youth. Having families and youth involved in all areas of planning, implementation and evaluation is a major part of the development of a system of care community. They should be involved from the beginning of the process. This means including multiple family voices which provide a variety of perspectives.
Youth-guided means establishing an environment where youth are safe to find their voices and develop their passions and use them to impact the system at every level. Additionally, a youth-guided system provides opportunities for youth to participate in program development and change and to actively participate in the planning when policies or decisions are being established that will affect their lives.
Community-based means that services, as well as the management and decision-making responsibility of those services rest at the community level. The needed services and informal supports should be available within the local community and driven by the child and family team.
Cultural and linguistic competency (CLC) focuses on creating an environment that promotes health equity and increases access for youth and families. CLC works towards ensuring that a person’s cultural beliefs are acknowledged and respected when receiving services regardless of age, sexual identity, language, poverty, race, body size, ability or religion. The goal of CLC is to create an environment that is supportive and inclusive of all people seeking services.