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1 Apr 2022

SUBURBAN NEWS: Montgomery County awarded grants to support crisis services and student assistance programs

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April 1, 2022 Category: Suburban News, Sun Report Posted by:

NORRISTOWN, Pa. — The Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Early Intervention (MH/DD/EI) has announced the award of two Community Mental Health Services Block Grants. The funds will go toward bolstering crisis services and student assistance programs in Montgomery County.

In partnership with the HHS Office of Managed Care Solutions, MH/DD/EI was awarded $239,316 to hire a mental health crisis consultant. 

The consultant will undertake a dynamic crisis planning project to evaluate the current functioning of the local mental health crisis system and produce a clear list of recommendations and next steps to enhance how Montgomery County supports individuals and families experiencing a mental health crisis. 

Essential to this work will be the input and guidance of a crisis system advisory group made up of families, individuals, first responders, mental health professionals, school personnel, and cross-system collaborators. The grant was awarded to Third Horizon Strategies after a thorough RFP process. Work will begin this month.

In addition, $475,350 was secured to allow expansion and enhancement of Student Assistance Program (SAP) activities including:

• Increase in county-funded SAP services in elementary school buildings

• Staff training and certification in evidence-based programming

• Free SAP training to elementary school level SAP Core Team staff and cyber school staff who serve Montgomery County students

• Purchase of platform for use during Student Assistance Program screening services. This platform includes access to a web-based screening tool that identifies risks associated with mental health and drug and alcohol needs.

For questions about access to free SAP K-12 SAP Training, please contact Charlene Artillio at: [email protected].

The grant funding was made available to Pennsylvania county applicants through the Department of Human Services’ (DHS) Office of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS). Grant funding will be available for two years through June 30, 2024.

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