Child, Youth, and Families

Children and teens grow and succeed when their communities work together to care for their needs and support change. At the Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DSAMH), we work to better the social and emotional health of Utah’s children and their families. We support child focused behavioral health efforts while teaming up with stakeholders and community partners across Utah to advance behavioral health services across a full range of care in all settings for children and their families.


Infant / Early Childhood Mental Health

Infant / Early Childhood Mental Health

  • DSAMH is committed to helping parents, caregivers, and providers support the social emotional needs of young children.

School Aged Children

School Aged Children

  • DSAMH is committed to increasing behavioral health access for school aged children and their families as well as strengthening community partnerships across Utah.

Transition Aged Youth

Transition Aged Youth

  • DSAMH is committed to help transition-age youth (16 - 25) grow and succeed through a full range of services and supports that are personal, culturally based, family-guided, and youth-driven.

Youth Suicide Prevention

Youth Suicide Prevention

  • DSAMH is committed to helping caregivers, providers, and communities support the needs of those at risk of suicide.

Family Peer Support

Family Peer Support

  • DSAMH is committed to supporting families through peer driven approaches to empower and provide hope and healing.

Intellectual / Developmental Disability and Mental Health

Intellectual / Developmental Disability and Mental Health

  • DSAMH is committed to increasing awareness and providing evidence informed training to expand provider’s ability to care effectively and increase service access.

Youth Substance Use

Youth Substance Use

  • DSAMH is committed to helping manage the substance use and mental health needs of each individual and providing the most appropriate treatment services.

First Episode Psychosis

First Episode Psychosis

  • DSAMH is committed to reduce the effect of early psychosis through comprehensive, individualized services rooted in family-guided, youth-driven approaches to help each individual and their family build resiliency, reduce symptoms and improve life functioning.

Infant / Early Childhood Mental Health

Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health (IECMH) is focused on the social emotional development of children prenatal to five years old. Social emotional development is a child’s ability to form close relationships, manage and express emotions, and explore and learn from their environment. IECMHC can be a prevention tool as well as a treatment tool to help young children and their families. DSAMH is committed to helping parents, caregivers, and providers support the social emotional needs of young children. By teaming up with early childhood providers efforts are being made to build an interconnected infant and early childhood system.

For more supports visit some of our community partners:

There is currently no info in this section.

School Aged Children

Across the state, our 13 local mental health authorities (LMHA) provide a full range of mental health services for children and families. Each area provides individual and family therapy, group services, medication management, respite, intensive mental health services and has access to day or residential treatment options. Each LMHA provides evidence-based treatment to help children reduce their mental health symptoms.

Our LMHAs work closely in partnership with Utah State Board of Education (USBE), school districts/LEAs, to increase and support school-based behavioral health provider access to behavioral health services in the school setting. The LMHA and the LEA work together to develop a full range of services to support youth in their area. Services may include individual and family therapy, therapeutic group services, skills-based group services, family peer support, or others depending on the need. School based behavioral health services provide early intervention and treatment in the lives of children and youth with mental illness; to lessen the effects and offer support to youth and their families.

School Safety Center

The School Safety Center is a partnership between the DSAMH, USBE, The Department of Public Safety (DPS), and SafeUT focused on the physical and emotional safety of each student (K-12) through technical support, training, and resource by:

  • Encouraging school safety
  • Overseeing the school safety program
  • Providing resources to All
  • Establishing problem-solving approaches
  • Offering technical support for safety initiatives
  • Overseeing the state school climate survey
  • Delivering critical incident response training

For more supports visit some of our community partners:

Transition Aged Youth

Youth Empowered Solutions to Succeed (YESS) is a program available in Salt Lake County for homeless youth and in Utah County for those experiencing early psychosis. It is funded by a federal grant to help people between the ages of 16 and 25 as they enter adulthood in areas like housing, employment, education, and community living.

Youth Empowerment is a key part of YESS and is driven by youth and young adults with lived experiences receiving mental health services. The program organizes the Youth of Utah Advocacy Coalition (YUTAC) , which provides opportunities for 16-25 year-olds to take leadership roles in program planning and policy development, experience-driven development, training, mentoring, public speaking, and other opportunities for growth.

For more supports visit some of our community partners:

  • Coming soon!

Youth Suicide Prevention

There are three main ways that DSAMH works to prevent youth suicide. First, DSAMH works with community partners and coalitions to speak to risk factors and protective factors related to suicide prevention for individuals and in relationships. This includes protective factors such as youth coping, problem-solving, and conflict resolution skills; levels of connection to individuals, family, community, and social institutions; and access to a variety of clinical interventions. This also includes addressing environmental risk factors such as access to lethal means, blocks to getting mental health treatment, and social isolation. DSAMH also supports communities and schools in postvention responses to reduce risk after a recent suicide death. Learn more about how we address risk and protective factors at https://liveonutah.org/get-involved/.

DSAMH provides training and technical help on the Zero Suicide model to increase the quality of physical and behavioral healthcare given to people at risk of suicide.

DSAMH also provides direct education to the public through media communications, suicide prevention training, and other targeted resources, on how to recognize and respond to the warning signs of suicide. Learn more about the Live On campaign and suicide prevention trainings at https://liveonutah.org.

Project AWARE (Advancing Wellness And Resilience in Education) is a federal SAMHSA grant focused mostly on Jordan, Cache, and Alpine school districts with some statewide activities. Project AWARE is a joint effort between education and community mental health organizations, which tries to increase skills for mental health and well-being among all students, improve mental health literacy among educators and parents, and increase access to mental health services for students and their families. Resources for Project AWARE can be found at https://www.schools.utah.gov/safehealthyschools and https://www.schools.utah.gov/prevention/suicide.

Utah Youth Hope Project (UHYP) is backed through the Garrett Lee Smith State/Tribal Youth Suicide Prevention & Early Intervention grant by SAMHSA, and is focused on youth ages 10-24 throughout Utah. Specific regions of focus include Northeastern Utah and Salt Lake City School District, as well as projects across the state. UHYP addresses suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention, and aims to ensure better access to quality care for youth to decrease risk of suicide. https://www.sprc.org/grantees/utah

For more supports visit some of our community partners:

  • YOUR CHILD HAS TALKED ABOUT ENDING THEIR LIFE: WHAT'S NEXT?

Family Peer Support

Certified Family Peer Support (CFPS) is a “caregiver to caregiver” approach used to support families caring for children, youth and young adults with mental health or substance use challenges. CFPS is given by a parent or caregiver with lived experience who is trained to assist other families by providing support, identifying resources, and helping find access to services for the child and family. CFPS can be offered individually or as part of a team. While the focus is supporting the child’s parent or caregiver, CFPS providers may also provide assistance to other members of the family. CFPS builds effective engagement and can help create more positive results for a family. CFPS is a critical piece of any range of services.

For more supports visit some of our community partners:

Intellectual / Developmental Disability and Mental Health

Alongside the Division of Services for Persons with Disabilities (DSPD) we are working to develop our state mental health services to better serve people with intellectual/developmental disability and mental health diagnosis (IDD/MH). Through increased awareness and evidence informed training and consultation, we aim to increase access to providers to support those who need services.

For more supports visit some of our community partners:

Youth Substance Use

Those with substance use and mental health issues may be referred to as “co-occurring disorder” or “dual diagnosis”. Both substance use and mental health are treated at the same time, allowing for a better treatment plan for both disorders.

It is common for adolescents to experience substance use and co-occurring disorders. These can be treated by qualified professionals. A screening and assessment are first performed to identify the needs of the individual and then appropriate treatment options are discussed. Treatment options can consist of a wide variety of options that may include prevention services, educational courses, individual therapy treatment services, general outpatient treatment, intensive outpatient treatment, residential treatment, recovery support services, etc.

For more supports visit some of our community partners:

First Episode Psychosis

Do any of these sound familiar?

  • Nights with no sleep
  • Thinking others can read your mind
  • Withdrawn from family and friends
  • Suspicious or afraid of others
  • Thoughts or beliefs that seem strange
  • Belief that media sends hidden messages to you
  • Loss of interest in things you used to enjoy
  • Hearing things that others don’t hear

These could be signs of early psychosis which include clinical high risk for psychosis and first episode psychosis. Psychosis can have a huge effect on a person and their family. These effects may include sadness, family conflict, and disruption in social functioning. Research has shown that comprehensive, coordinated care can improve the results of a person experiencing early psychosis. Services include screening, assessment, therapy, medication management, family education, case management, occupational therapy, and recovery support (e.g., supported employment/education and peer support services). Results may be improved symptomatic and age-appropriate functioning and delaying or preventing the onset of psychosis. Weber Human Services, Davis Behavioral Health, Wasatch Behavioral Health, and Four Corners Community Behavioral Health provide early psychosis services.

For more supports visit some of our community partners:

  • Coming soon!

Provider Resources

This section is a resource for providers to gain information on referral sources, screeners, evidence based treatment, telehealth and training.

Provider Resources

More Resources Coming Soon!

Community Resources