Children’s Services

Addressing the complex mental health needs of children, youth, and families is fundamental to the future of Mississippi. Nearly 35,000 of Mississippi’s children and youth have severe and persistent mental health needs which can impact every aspect of their lives.

Mental health is important at every stage in life. A child’s mental health can affect their mood and behavior and the way they think and feel about themselves. The need for comprehensive, intensive mental health services coordinated with high quality services from education, health, Medicaid, foster care, juvenile justice and vocational rehabilitation agencies places upon our communities a critical responsibility to claim these children, youth and families as our own.

A variety of services and supports are available for children and youth. Families who need mental help services or support for their children can call the Mississippi Department of Mental Health’s Office of Consumer Supports at 1-877-210-8513 for more information. You may also enter your zip code in the Where to Go section on the Homepage for DMH certified providers in your area. See below for the latest Children and Youth Services Directory available from the Department of Mental Health.

Children and Youth Services Directory

Improving the Mental Health of Mississippi’s Children and Youth and the School Safety Act of 2019

Mental and emotional problems among youth are common and need to be addressed, just like physical problems such as asthma and diabetes. Mental and emotional problems can have a serious impact on learning and the classroom. The stigma surrounding mental health issues often keeps students, parents and teachers from coping as easily as they would physical health issues.

In the 2019 Legislative Session, legislators passed the Mississippi School Safety Act of 2019. As a result of the legislation, the Mississippi Department of Mental Health and the Mississippi Department of Education, both of whom are a part of the Governor’s school safety task force, have developed Improving the Mental Health of Mississippi’s Children as a resource to help school districts comply with three components of the legislation. Click here to download this guide, which includes information about signs that may indicate a child or adolescent needs professional help, a standardized Memorandum of Understanding, and sample referral forms. Click the image for a PDF of this guide, or click here to begin a download of a Word file.

Services for Children and Youth with Serious Emotional Disturbance

  • Therapeutic Group Home
  • Treatment Foster Care
  • Prevention/Early Intervention
  • Emergency/ Crisis Services
  • Crisis Stabilization Services
  • Targeted Case Management
  • Peer Support (Family & Youth)
  • Community Support Services
  • Day Treatment
  • Outpatient Therapy (Individual, Family and Group)
  • Physician/Psychiatric Services
  • MAP (Making A Plan) Teams
  • Family Education and Support
  • Wraparound Facilitation
  • MYPAC – Mississippi Youth Programs Around the Clock
  • Respite Services
  • Therapeutic Foster Care



Navigate assists individuals, 15-30 years of age, who have experienced their first episode of psychosis. Interventions include intensive case management, individual or group therapy, supported education and employment services, family education and support, medication management, and peer support services. This recovery-oriented approach bridges existing resources for this population and eliminates gaps between child, adolescent, and adult mental health programs. DMH funds the program at Region 6 Life Help, Region 9 Hinds Behavioral Health Services, Region 15 Warren- Yazoo Behavioral Health, and Region 8 Mental Health Services. In the Spring of 2022, four additional Navigate programs were funded in Regions 2, 4, 7, and 14 through federal supplemental COVID-19 Emergency and ARPA funding. experiencing first episode psychosis. A total of eight Navigate programs are currently operating across the state. Click here for a brochure discussing Navigate.

MAP (Making a Plan) Teams

A Making A Plan (MAP) Team is made up of individuals from local community agencies that work with children and youth. The first priority of the MAP Team is to review cases concerning children and youth (ages 0 – 21) who have a serious emotional/behavioral disorder or serious mental illness and who are at risk of an inappropriate placement due to the lack of access to or availability of needed services and supports in the community. The members of these teams meet on a monthly basis to identify community-based services and resources that may divert children from inappropriate inpatient care.

Juvenile Outreach Programs

Juvenile Outreach Programs, operated by Community Mental Health Centers throughout the state, provide linkage and access to mental health services to youth who are involved in the juvenile justice system. The programs provide assessments, community support, wraparound facilitation, and a number of other services to youth with serious emotional disorders and/or mental illnesses who are in detention centers or the juvenile justice system. The goal is to improve behavioral and emotional symptoms, and also to prevent future contacts between youth and the courts.

Wraparound Facilitation

Wraparound Facilitation is family and youth guided and provides intensive services to allow children and youth to remain in their homes and community. With the help of a team, the family and youth lead the development of an individualized service plan to help them achieve their goals.


Speak to your Community Mental Health Center to find out more about availability of The Above services in your local community.


CHAMP: Child Access to Mental Health and Psychiatry

The Child Access to Mental Health and Psychiatry service, known as CHAMP, is a consultation and educational service for pediatric primary care providers in Mississippi.

The University of Mississippi Medical Center’s Department of Psychiatry, in conjunction with the Mississippi Department of Mental Health, has received a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to provide free and same-day telephone consultations to pediatric primary care providers in Mississippi. These consultations will be offered with an educational focus and will be performed primarily by UMMC child psychiatrists and child psychologists.

The CHAMP team supports primary care providers (doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants) with questions about mental health care such as diagnostic clarification, medication adjustment, or treatment planning. Click here to visit UMMC for more information.

Shatter the Silence

Shatter the Silence is a campaign of the Mississippi Department of Mental Health to encourage young people to talk through their feelings with friends and trusted adults, and to also encourage those friends to show their concern and support. By working together, we can help those in need to realize it’s OK to reach out for help. Click the image below for more information. Click below for more information.