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Quick Guide for Self-Assessement of Family-Run Organizations in Systems of Care
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The National Directory of
Family-Run & Youth-Guided Organizations
for Children’s Behavioral Health

Statewide Parent Advocacy Network of New Jersey

Mailing Address:
35 Halsey St.
Newark, NJ 07102

Phone: 973-642-8100 ext 105
Fax: 973-642-8080

Contact Person: Diana Autin


Web Site: http://www.spannj.org

Population Served:
Serious Emotional and Behavioral Disturbances,Mental Illness/Mental Health

The vision of the Statewide Parent Advocacy Network is that all families in New Jersey will have the resources and support they need to ensure that their children become fully participating and contributing members of our communities and society. Our mission is to empower and support families and inform and involve professionals and others interested in the healthy development and education of children and youth. Our focus is on the whole child and family, including education, health and mental health, human services, child care, and child welfare/prevention. Our foremost commitment is to children and families with the greatest need due to disability; poverty; discrimination based on race, sex, language,immigrant or homeless status; involvement in the foster care, child welfare, or juvenile justice systems; geographic location; or other special circumstances. SPAN works toward our mission by providing information, training, technical assistance, parent-to-parent/family-to-family support, leadership development/capacity building, and advocacy.

The Statewide Parent Advocacy Network of New Jersey belongs to several national networks and organizations; serves as the New Jersey Chapter of Family Voices; a chapter of the Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health; and NJ Statewide Parent to Parents. We also serve as the Parent Training and Information Center for families of children 0-21 with disabilities. Although most of our work is done with families/parents, we have several youth projects that are youth-guided, including our Healthy Adolescent Partnership and our Transition to Adult Life projects. While we are a Statewide Organization we do more intensive work in several local communities, including the four urban communities in Essex County (Newark, East Orange, Orange, and Irvington), Paterson, Jersey City, and Trenton. We are also a Regional organization serving the Northeast Region of the US (we serve as the TA provider for the federally-funded Parent Training and Information Centers and Community Parent Resource Centers in the Northeast US. We are also part of the National TA Alliance for Parent Centers; on the Board of National Family Voices; on a national workgroup developing a self-assessment instrument of family organizations on cultural and liguistic competence.

Organization role:
• Provide family to family or youth to youth support on an individual family or youth level (e.g., peer-to-peer, family support partners, parent navigators)
• Sponsor/run support groups for families or youth
• Provide contracted direct services (e.g., respite, care management)
• Provide education to families or youth on issues of interest
• Provide training and mentoring of family members or youth (e.g., to assume leadership roles, act as provider)
• Provide training and presentations to system of care/child serving agencies or community
• Provide technical assistance (e.g., to other family or youth organizations, child serving agencies)
• Recruit family members or youth for positions within child serving agencies
• Organize conferences
• Participate in child serving system/system of care policy-making and leadership groups
• Participate in child serving system/system of care management meetings
• Provide quality monitoring and evaluation
• Provide advocacy
• Conduct research
• Conduct social marketing

Organization type:
• A local family-run organization without national or statewide affiliation
• A family-run or youth-guided organization with a current or past affiliation with a System of Care Community of the Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children and Their Families Program (i.e., CMHS System of Care grant site)
• A statewide family-run chapter of a national organization

Region(s) served:
• Statewide

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