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LGBTQ Support

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (LGBTQ) support provides information on LGBTQ organizations and support groups that advocate for equalized acceptance of LGBTQ people in society. These support groups provide an opportunity for LGBTQ to meet youth with similar life experiences and empower them to advocate for themselves.

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LGBTQ Support

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ACR Health Hotline

Provides various support groups for Leisbian, Gay, Bisexual and Questioning youth ages 13-25 and Transyouth ages 5-25 as well as Family Support will a Credentialed Family Peer Advocate for Families of Transyouth.


Become a Youth Peer Advocate (YPA)

Are you a young person who is between the ages of 18 and 30 years old with first-hand experience with mental health, special education, or foster care services? Are you curious about ways you could help a younger person who is facing some of the same challenges you faced?

If so, consider becoming a Youth Peer Advocate (YPA). Learn more about how you can use your own experience with recovery to make a positive impact in another young person’s life.


Coming Out Support

Telling people about your sexuality is called coming out. This website provides helpful information "dos" and "don'ts" to support your coming out. Although this is a United Kingdom website, it provides good information for the lgbt community.


Culturally Competent Care for LGBTQ Older Adults Video

This video, jointly produced by the Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovaton and SAGE, the nation’s largest and oldest organization serving lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender elders, looks at the unique experiences and needs of LGBTQ older adults to get at the vital importance of providers making efforts to become familiar with the diverse populations they serve, and be ready to meet consumers where they are in providing for their health care needs.


Disability Rights NY Hotlines & Resources

All requests for assistance are processed by DRNY's Intake Office. The vast majority of requests for assistance are received and processed by telephone or TTY. The intake office is available to conduct telephone or in-person intake interviews Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m, and includes Spanish speaking staff.


Mental Health Resources for College Students

Although this resource is provides college students and young people with quality information on maintaining good mental health and identifying mental health issues, it is not meant to take the place of professional advice from a qualified mental health specialist. Some of the most common mental health issues facing college students include: Depression; Anxiety; Suicide; Bipolar Disorder; Eating Disorders; Addiction; Self-harm; and Struggles with Identity.


NYS Bias and Discrimination Hotline

Governor Andrew Cuomo has launched a toll-free hotline for New Yorkers report incidents of bias and discrimination.  

The hotline will help the state’s efforts to protect New Yorkers and allow those who are victims of prejudice file a complaint with the Division of Human Rights.

Following the rise of the recent reports of discrimination, bias-motivated threats, harassment and violence, Governor Cuomo also announced investigations into alleged hate crimes across New York.



NYS Systems of Care

The Systems of Care (SOC) Framework is a coordinated network of services and supports that are organized to meet the physical, mental, social, emotional, education, and developmental needs of children and their families.

Building Systems of Care, by its own designation as “systems” and not “system,” requires cross-system partnerships with the common goal of developing a broad array and continuum of services and supports that are infused with the values of:

  • Family Driven & Youth Guided
  • Community-Based
  • Cultural & Linguistic Competence

Systems of Care refer to the collaborative, coordinated infrastructure within a community to meet the needs of children and families so they can achieve their own definition of success and equitable outcomes.

Systems of Care are implemented at both the systems level (policy, financing, management) and the service/support delivery level.


NYS Systems of Care Pilot

In 2016, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) awarded NYS Office of Mental Health with a four year, twelve million dollar grant to support expansion and integration of the Systems of Care (SOC) framework through the creation of sustainable infrastructure and the development/implementation of High Fidelity Wraparound within Health Homes Serving Children.  This project followed the groundwork of NYS Success, which worked to infuse the System of Care framework into all 55 upstate counties through learning collaborative phases. Materials developed by the statewide project, in partnership with many cross-systems partners, are available on the Multiple Systems Navigator using the links below.


September 2021 Update: 

SOC Quarterly Virtual Learning Community Webinar - We are so pleased to announce that our topic this quarter will be revisiting of the System of Care framework and a panel discussion by the Cross-Systems Deputy Commissioners Workgroup. Confirmed presenters as of this date include these members, who will speak about the importance of cross-systems collaboration at all levels – child and family team planning, county, regional and state. Contact if you would like to receive the meeting invite for the session.

Renee Rider, Executive Director, NYS Council on Children and Families
Lisa Ghartey Ogundimu, Deputy Commissioner, Child Welfare and Community Services, NYS Office of Children and Family Services
Suzanne Bolling, Manager, Office of Special Education, Non-district Unit, NYS Education Department
Donna Bradbury, Associate Commissioner, Office of Prevention and Health Initiatives, NYS Office of Mental Health
Jill Pettinger, Deputy Commissioner, Division of Service Delivery, State Operations & Statewide Services, NYS Office for People With Developmental Disabilities
April Hamilton, Acting Director, Division of Program Development & Management, Office of Health Insurance Programs, NYS Department of Health
Moderator: Angela Keller, NYS Systems of Care Project Director, NYS Office of Mental Health

CLMHD Launch of Building Effective Children’s Systems Webinar Series – The SOC team is collaborating with the NYS Conference of Local Mental Hygiene Directors (CLMHD) on a webinar series focused on building effective children’s systems. Session 1: System of Care Overview will take place Monday, October 25, 2021, 2:00-3:30 PM. The intent of this eight-part series is to foster peer to peer interaction and cross-site learning to support local development, enhancement, and expansion of cross-system efforts to better serve children, youth, and young adults with emotional, social and behavioral needs, and their families across NYS. Our first meeting will be led by Sheila Pires, managing partner of the Human Service Collaborative and author of Building System of Care: A Primer, who will provide a System of Care (SOC) overview.  Sheila will be joined by Michael Orth and Marion Mossman, who will share examples of how SOC practice has been operationalized in Westchester and Otsego Counties as well as other localities across NYS. This project is led by CLMHD’s Children and Families Committee Chairs, Michael Orth (Westchester County), Richelle Gregory (Clinton County) and Lisa Fiato (CLMHD Director of Public Policy), in partnership with the Office of Mental Health, the TA Network at the University of Maryland, and the Center for Human Services Research at SUNY Albany. 

Zoom Information: 

You are invited to a Zoom meeting. 

When: Oct 25, 2021 02:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada) 

Register in advance for this meeting: 

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. 

System of Care Summit 2022 – Please hold the date! We will be convening in Albany on June 14 and 15 for an exciting two days of discussion, sharing and learning. We are thrilled to announce that Jody Levinson-Johnson will also be joining as a Keynote Speaker. Dr. Levinson-Johnson is the President & CEO of the Council on Accreditation. She previously served as the Assistant Vice President of Practice Improvement at the National Council for Behavioral Health, Chief Clinical Officer for a multi-state children’s care management organization, as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Louisiana Office of Behavioral Health, and as the Vice President of Coordinated Care Services, Inc. (CCSI) in NYS. Her experiences leading system reform efforts across the country prompted her interest in the environmental contexts that surround deep change in social and public systems.  There are many other plans underway to support New York State’s collaborative work and systems change on behalf of children, youth and young adults and their families.

The Ne​w York State Health Foundation (NYSHealth) 2022 Special Projects Fund Request for Proposals (RFP) is now available. Applicants must submit an online inquiry form to determine whether a proposed project fits the funding criteria. There are two funding cycles for the 2022 Special Projects Fund. Deadlines for the online inquiry form are October 7, 2021 and March 2, 2022. Selected organizations will be invited to submit full proposals, with deadlines of December 8, 2021 and May 5, 2022. NYSHealth Special Projects Fund awards are one-time, nonrenewable funding opportunities consistent with the Foundation’s mission to improve the health of all New Yorkers but outside of its main priority areas. Read details on the 2022 Special Projects Fund RFP and frequently asked questions


The SHAPE System – We will hold a SHAPE System Overview on October 29th from 1:00pm-2:00pm and invite districts to apply for the second annual 2022 SHAPE Up NY Learning Collaborative. If your school district is interested in exploring The SHAPE System ( now to assess and make improvements to your school mental health system, please contact We have several tools and resources to support your efforts. 

Systems of Care Action Planning: Given the fiscal stressors, workforce shortages and increased needs for young people, has your county engaged in a comprehensive mapping of the children’s System of Care to identify access points, available services, challenges/barriers and gaps/needs?  Have all systems, families and youth been involved in the mapping and identifying action steps to take? Even in the midst of COVID-19 and our decreased in-person contact, collaboration is needed now more than ever. Consider engaging in a county process in the coming months. We offer fully virtual (five two-hour on-line sessions), hybrid (three two-hour on-line sessions and one half-day session in person), or in-person (full work day) methods for delivery. Please reach out to if your county is interested.

Wraparound Training and Implementation Institute: If you have questions regarding Wraparound training, please contact

NYS High Fidelity Wraparound Implementation Video: Learn about the benefits of the practice model within Health Homes from a variety of perspectives.

Project Evaluation: If you have questions regarding the new SOC grant evaluation, please contact or

Did You Know?

  • The social marketing tool kit materials released in 2018, in nine languages, are still available on under the tabs Health Homes Explained, System of Care Explained, Family Peer Advocate and Youth Peer Advocate.
  • The Multiple System Navigator ( is an excellent location to find information on cross-systems news and events. The site was built for youth, parents, family members and caregivers that rely on supports from multiple child and family serving systems.
  • The System of Care Framework has been revised to better reflect the evolution of research and children’s systems changes. This monograph is an important one to read and come back to, time and time again.
  • There are many webinar offerings that have been pulled together by the Institute for Innovation and Implementation at the University of Maryland, for their summer Training Institute LIVE! series. Dr. Gary Blau’s presentation Systems of Care: To Infinity and Beyond should speak to many of us working towards better collaboration across systems.
  • There are 17 training modules available through the Institute for Innovation and Implementation at the University of Maryland that outline information and resources for different aspects of the Systems of Care framework. Check it out at First, you must register before accessing the modules under Building Systems of Care.
  • Is a resource that families, agencies, and direct support staff can utilize to find local resources from health, funding, clothing, transportation, and more. 

Subscribe to (or unsubscribe from) the NYS Systems of Care Listserv by emailing

Need to Talk? We've got time to listen. Text "Got5" to 741741 to start a conversation. (Free, 24/7, Confidential Crisis Support)

NYProject HOPE: NY Project Hope is proud to introduce Move Forward with Hope - New Online Wellness Groups. Attached you will find more information about these virtual discussion groups that we hope you will share throughout your communications channels.

Feeling stressed by the COVID-19 pandemic? You are not alone: Here to Talk | Here to Listen | Here to Support.

Call the NY Project Hope Emotional Support Helpline 7 days a week, 8am-10pm at 1-844-863-9314 or visit

The Chafee Direct Cash Portal: Foster Care Youth that were financially impacted by COVID-19 may be eligible for cash assistance. Please see the attached flyer for more info and share with others as needed.



Q Centers

ACR Health’s Q Centers, located in the Central, Northern and Mohawk Valley regions of NYS, provide comprehensive programming for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning/queer (LGBTQ) youth and young adults between the ages of 8 and 29 and children of LGBTQ parents, their families, allies, teachers, school administrators, school counselors, school social workers, and health and human service providers in our nine-county service area. Q Center programming seeks to promote equality, celebrate diversity, and create a safer, more accepting and inclusive community for all.

Developed by the Council on Children and Families and Funded by the Developmental Disabilities Planning Council