The 2017 Texas System of Care (TxSOC) Conference, “Youth, Families, and Communities: Partnering to Change Lives,” was an interagency conference for state leaders, child-serving providers, community leaders, youth, and family members to learn about the components and benefits of the system of care framework, participate in networking opportunities, and share best practices. Conference planning partners included the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC), the Texas Institute for Excellence in Mental Health (TIEMH) at the University of Texas at Austin, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, the Texas Family Voice Network, and TxSOC communities statewide.
TxSOC is led by HHSC in collaboration with TIEMH, and is funded by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The TxSOC initiative aims to improve mental health outcomes for children, youth, and their families by implementing the system of care framework at the state and local levels.
We were exceptionally pleased to welcome Dr. Gary Blau, Chief, Child, Adolescent, and Family Branch, Center for Mental Health Services, SAMHSA, to Texas to provide the opening keynote address. System of care speakers and presenters from around the country with expertise in building effective and sustainable systems of care offered workshops organized in five tracks:
- System of Care 101
- Youth Voice
- Family Voice
- Cultural and Linguistic Competence
- Community-Based Services and Supports
The conference also featured youth and family member panels discussing what is essential to meaningful youth and family leadership in systems of care and creating youth and family-driven systems.
Celebrating Our Progress, Cultivating Our Future, the pre-conference for Texas System of Care (TxSOC) communities statewide, featured a celebration of communities’ SOC successes, a media training to assist with publicity for children’s mental health awareness activities and other speaking engagements, a discussion of best practices for SOC development, and identification of specific action items to enhance SOC sustainability. TxSOC communities also shared their key accomplishments through poster presentations.
The Texas System of Care team was honored to be joined by Texas’ system of care champions and new community leaders at the conference!