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CFS Faculty Drs. Sharon Hodges and Mario Hernandez Provide Keynote Presentation for New York System of Care

Sharon Hodges, PhDMario Hernandez, PhDCFS faculty Drs. Sharon Hodges and Mario Hernandez were keynote presenters at a special learning session for the New York State Conference of Local Mental Hygiene Directors/New York System of Care (SOC) Expansion Project.  The Expansion Project is a collaboration of upstate counties and state agencies whose goal is the full implementation of System of Care values and practices across all 55 counties in Upstate New York (not including New York City and Long Island). The project serves children and youth ages 5-21 that meet the federal criteria for Serious Emotional Disturbance and are enrolled in the most intensive, and costly mental health services, including residential treatment.
The keynote presentation on January 15th discussed strategies for building community resilience and shared values that facilitate system change. Drs. Hernandez and Hodges outlined a framework for applying the SOC approach in the development of networked systems for the promotion, prevention and treatment of services and supports serving children and youth with or at risk of mental, emotional and behavioral disorders and their families. They gave examples from other sectors using the Response to Intervention, School-wide Positive Behavior Support and Comprehensive Soldier.
“Your presentation expressed ideas and concepts clearly and shared a perspective that helped participants to make new associations about their SOC work,” said Mary Coppola, Technical Assistance Project Manager from the NYS Conference of Local Mental Hygiene Directors.
As an example, Elizabeth Meeker, Project Director of Monroe County ACCESS at the Monroe County Department of Human Services, shared her experience after hearing the keynote.
“In my meeting this morning with our local school districts and acute services (focusing the majority of our resource on the deep end versus tiered approach), I found myself reflecting on what you shared with us,” said Elizabeth.  “It is very timely in light of local, state and national conversations.”

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