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James Plastiras Director of Public Information New York State Office of Mental Health 518-474-6540 james.plastiras@omh.ny.gov

May 30, 2019

OMH Recognizes The Coalition for Hispanic Family Services for its Service to the Community

Albany, NY – The New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH) is honoring The Coalition for Hispanic Family Services (CHFS ) in Brooklyn as a recipient of the inaugural OMH Community Care Awards.

These awards are given during May – Mental Health Awareness Month – to recognize the extraordinary achievements of individuals and organizations who have furthered the OMH mission and made a positive contribution to the mental health system in their communities.

OMH Commissioner Dr. Ann Sullivan, said, “OMH is fortunate to have many great partners across the State who are helping us reshape state and local mental health systems by enhancing community-based services and improving the delivery of care and health outcomes for consumers. The Coalition for Hispanic Family Services has helped so many vulnerable people and families get the services they need, and we truly appreciate their vision, their values, and the role they play in helping us to fulfill our mission.”

Denise Rosario, ACSW, Executive Director of the Coalition, said “CHFS is honored to be recognized by the NYS Office of Mental Health for our tireless efforts in assisting children and families. CHFS is NYC’s only remaining foster care agency of color and a provider of culturally competent children’s mental health services.  The staff of CHFS have served NYC’s most at risk children and families for 30 years.  By using cross-systems collaboration and advocacy in a family focused approach, we are able to address the needs of high-risk children and eliminate barriers that prevent children’s access to much needed services in the child welfare and mental health systems.  We recognize that every child has a family and we persistently seek out and engage possible family resources, resulting in children being connected and establishing permanent ties to a forever family.  We take great pride in this cross-systems work and even greater satisfaction when we have made a difference in the life of a child.”

Under the leadership of Ms. Rosario and Deputy Executive Director Jeannette Burgos, LCSW, Ma., MEd, the Coalition for Hispanic Family Services was nominated for its excellent work providing services to children and families in communities where many live below the poverty level and have difficulty accessing needed treatment. The Coalition operates foster care and adoption services, child abuse prevention programs, outpatient and residential mental health programs, arts and after school education programs for children and adults, and parenting support programs. As New York City’s only Latino foster care and family services agency, the Coalition addresses family needs comprehensively and within a cultural context, with the goal of moving them towards self-reliance. 

The Community Care Awards were created in 2019 to highlight OMH’s partners and stakeholders in local communities across the State that are helping to identify and eliminate gaps in services, and are working to build strong community-based behavioral healthcare systems.  Input from these local partners helps OMH better understand regional needs and implement programs that will help people on the road to recovery from mental illness live their lives with a greater degree of independence and dignity.
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