Supports & Services
The Vermont Department of Mental Health (DMH) is responsible for seeing that mental health services are provided to Vermonters from Birth to age 18 (or age 22 if the youth is in Special Education.) In Chittenden County, DMH contracts with a Designated Agency (Howard Center, Child, Youth, and Family Services) who is responsible for providing a range of mental health services to children and families including crisis response, clinic based treatment, outreach treatment, family support, and prevention/screening/referral/consultation services. In addition, when these services are unable to meet a child or adolescent’s treatment needs while living in their home, the Department of Mental Health supports a range of intensive out of home treatment services. Along with Howard Center, Northeastern Family Institute of Vermont (NFI-VT) is designated by the State of Vermont as a Special Service Agency to help provide intensive treatment services to children and families with complex mental health needs across the state. Together this array makes up the public mental healthcare system in Chittenden County.
Chittenden County is also home to hundreds of private mental health organizations and providers who offer a range of mental health care to children and families. Between the public mental healthcare system and a vast array of private mental health providers, there are many different services, happening in many different settings, by many different types of providers using many different treatment approaches. With all of these variations, choosing the right mental healthcare services for a child or youth can be confusing. Hopefully the resources provided here can help. Click here to view descriptions of the range of services available to children and adolescents in Chittenden County and how to access them.