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New Initiatives
  • Clinics in Schools: In September 2010, in collaboration with KIPP Infinity Charter School and Central Park East Middle Schools in Harlem, Northside began a pilot project of school-based mental health clinics.  When Northside began its Clinics in Schools initiative, only five of the 90 public and charter schools in Harlem had on-site mental health services.  With the Clinics in Schools program, Northside again has the opportunity to move boldly to narrow the gap between the acute mental health needs of youth in East and Central Harlem and the availability and accessibility of quality services, strongly enhancing their chances to succeed personally and academically in the future.   

The program provides diagnostic and therapeutic services to underserved children on-site at their school; supports school personnel in addressing and managing challenging behaviors and family crises; reduces the stigma of mental health treatment through educational outreach to teachers and families; and strengthens school, family, and community partnerships to improve outcomes for youth with serious mental health needs.  Our goal in this first year is to provide services for at least 80 children at the two pilot sites.

  • Odyssey House: Northside is now working with this new community partner, a comprehensive substance abuse treatment center on East 121st Street, providing Early Head Start services to pregnant women and infants, and toddlers of mothers who are being treated at the center.  These clients would otherwise not have access to these developmental and educational services.  Management staff of both agencies meet regularly to assure a smooth integration of services and compliance with Head Start regulations.
  • Integrated Classroom: In September 2010 we introduced a new integrated classroom in our Head Start Program.  Staff observed that a number of children at the Susan Patricof Head Start Center required more intense intervention than the current program configuration could provide.  Conversely, in the Therapeutic Early Childhood Center there were special needs children who were progressing beyond the need for a self-contained classroom and who were ready for less intense intervention.  This classroom serves 17 children (nine typically developing and eight with special needs) providing both groups the opportunity to learn in an inclusive environment.

The integrated classroom arrangement has been extremely successful in meeting the individual needs of our students.  Both groups have adjusted well in the classroom, interacting with and learning from each other.  With an expanded staff to include teachers with expertise in the area of special needs children, students receive the necessary instruction and support.  This initiative has allowed Northside to provide more extensive services to the community at large.

  • Collaboration with the East Harlem 0-5 Network and the Hunter College Schools of Social Work and Urban Public Health: This collaboration has identified that mental health clinics need to build their capacity in order to intervene earlier and serve the particular needs of children under five.  Through this initiative Northside continues to develop strategies to more effectively provide integrated mental health services to children from birth to five years old in East and Central Harlem.  Goals for the network include: clarifying what documentation is needed for children to qualify for Early Intervention mental health services; providing specialized training to mental health providers serving very young children; and making mental health services accessible and affordable to children who do not qualify for Early Intervention (those without cognitive or other learning delays) but who still suffer from emotional or behavioral disorders.  As part of the group’s efforts this year, it received a State Early Childhood Learning Collaborative (ECLC) Grant to focus on social/emotional issues in the 0-3 population.  This collaboration was one of four awarded statewide and the only one in New York City.

 

 

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Current and Past Events:

Department of Health & Human Services, Ad Council and Sesame Workshop Public Service Announcement was unveiled on 10/15/2010 by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius at the Northside Center for Child Development in New York City

Northside's Dr. Dye and Sonia Gonzalez-Cruz interviewed on NY1 

Recent Organizational Accomplishments

 

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