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Our Programs

Mental Health Services Act (MHSA)


Mental Health Promotion and Early Intervention (PEI) Services

Mental Health Promotion and Early Intervention (PEI) Services are expected to include meaningful involvement and engagement of diverse communities, individual participants, their families, and community partners.  Programs are developed to build capacity for providing mental health prevention and intervention services at sites where people would not normally go for mental health services (e.g., community-based organizations, schools, ethnic specific cultural centers, health providers). The PEI service category is comprised of the following program areas: (1) Stigma Reduction, (2) School-Based Mental Health Promotion, (3) Population-Focused Mental Health Promotion, (4) Mental Health Consultation and Capacity Building, and (5) Comprehensive Crisis Services.

Stigma Reduction

Sharing Our Lives, Voices and Experiences (SOLVE) is a stigma elimination program with Mental Health Association of San Francisco. SOLVE trains people in the community who have been living with mental health challenges to share their personal experiences. By telling their stories, these peer educators help to reduce the social barriers that prevent people from obtaining treatment. The SOLVE Speakers Bureau consists of an array of people who have had challenges in their lives with mental health conditions and who come forward to talk openly about these experiences by sharing their stories of struggle, hope and triumph with others. SOLVE’s mission aims to decrease the fear, shame and isolation of those with mental health challenges and conditions through peer education.


School-Based Mental Health Promotion

School-Based Mental Health Promotion – a collaboration of community-based organizations and San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) K-12 school campuses – applies best practices that address non-academic barriers to learning. These programs offer students and their families a range of support services with services offered on-campus, during and after the school day, so that they are accessible to students and their families. These programs build on the strengths of community partners and existing school support services to incorporate a wide variety of philosophies, which are rooted in a prevention or resiliency model, such as youth development, peer education, cultural or ritual-based healing, and wraparound family supports. Since 2006, school-based mental health promotion programs have experienced systemic changes to become an integrated part of the schools in which they operate and currently serve nearly 10,000 individuals within SFUSD.

The BHS Child, Youth and Family System of Care oversees the services and the following lead agencies support the School-Based Mental Health Promotion services:

    1. YMCA Bayview
    2. Bayview Hunter’s Point Foundation
    3. Edgewood Center for Children and Families
    4. Instituto Familiar de la Raza
    5. Richmond Area
      Multi-Services, Inc. (RAMS)
    6. YMCA Urban Services

Current school-based mental health programs include School-Based Wellness Promotion services at high schools, and Early Intervention Program Consultation at elementary and middle schools. These programs are currently offered at (20) twenty SFUSD schools.


Population-Focused Mental Health Promotion

Population-focused mental health promotion services are typically delivered in community-based settings.  This service category generally includes outreach and engagement, mental health promotion activities and psycho-social education, behavioral health screening and assessment, referrals and linkage, and short-term therapeutic services.


Lead Agency


Socially Isolated Older Adults


Felton/Family Service Agency: Senior Peer Recovery Center

The target population is seniors with behavioral health needs. Program reaches hard-to-engage participants with informal outreach and relationship building; assists participants with housing, addiction treatment groups, socialization and cultural activities, and making linkages to more formal behavioral health services when feasible.


Institute on Aging: Older Adult Behavioral Health Screening Program

The target population is language-diverse clients age 55+ in IOA’s citywide care management programs. Program provides home-based, routine, multi-lingual and broad spectrum behavioral health screening. Screening participants also receive culturally competent clinical feedback, prevention-focused psycho-education, and linkage support to appropriate behavioral health intervention services.




Westside Community Services/Ajani Program

The target population is low-income African American families who suffer from mental illness and racism. Program helps to build strong families by providing an understanding how healthy families function and by encouraging them to develop leadership, collective responsibility and mentoring skills.


Bayview Hunters Point Foundation/ African American Healing Alliance

The target population is African American residents of San Francisco who have been exposed to violence and trauma. Program leaders have been convening a monthly AAHA membership meeting and collaboratively planning with other relevant groups such as the school district, the Department of Housing and Urban Affairs and the SF Department of Public Health.


YMCA Bayview/ African Amer Holistic Wellness Prgrm

The target population is African American individuals and families in Bayview, Ocean View and Western Addition communities. Program promotes healthy social connections and opportunities to contribute to others.


Bayview Hunters Point Foundation/SF Live D10 Wellness

Activities for individuals or groups intended to enhance protective factors, reduce risk factors and/or support individuals in their recovery; promote healthy behaviors (e.g. mindfulness, physical activity); increase the awareness and understanding of healing effects of cultural, spiritual and/or traditional healing practices.


Asian/Pacific Islander

Community Youth Center/API Youth Family Community Support Services

The target population is API and LGTBQQ youth ages 11-18 and their families. Program provides screening and assessment, case management and referral to other mental health services.


Richmond Area Multi-Services/API Mental Health Collaborative

The target population is Filipinos, Samoans and South East Asians of all ages. The API Collaborative has convened three work groups of 6-8 culturally and linguistically congruent agencies to focus on each component of the target population across the lifespan and in appropriate community settings. The Collaborative has engaged in substantial outreach and community education.

Mayan/Indigenous Latino


Instituto Familiar de la Raza/Indigena Health and Wellness Collaborative

The target population is Indigena immigrant families, mostly newly arrived young adults. The program works to increase access to health and social services, to support spiritual and cultural activities and community building, and social networks of support. The program also helps with early identification and interventions in families struggling with trauma, depression, addiction and other challenges. 

Native American


Native American Health Center/Living in Balance

The target population is American Indian/Alaska Native adults and older adults who have been exposed to or at-risk of trauma, as well as children, youth, and TAY who are in stressed families, at risk for school failure, and/or at risk of involvement or involved with the juvenile justice system. The program included extensive outreach and engagement through cultural events such as Traditional Arts, Talking Circles, Pow Wows, and the Gathering of Native Americans. Services also include NextGen Assessments, individual counseling, and traditional healers.

Adults who are homeless or At-Risk for Homelessness



Central City Hospitality House/6th Street Self-Help Center

The target population is adult residents facing behavioral health challenges and homelessness in the 6th Street, South of Market neighborhood. Program provides a low-threshold engagement that includes peer programs, case management, primary care access, support groups and socialization. Many are referred to mental health services prior to assessment due to the acuity of their needs.

Central City Hospitality House/Community Building Program

The target population is traumatized, homeless and multiply diagnosed adult residents of the Tenderloin neighborhood. The program conducts outreach, screening, assessment and referral to mental health services. It also conducts wellness promotion and a successful 18-week peer internship training program.

Central City Hospitality House/Tenderloin Self-Help Center

Target population is adults with behavioral health challenges and homelessness who live in the Tenderloin neighborhood. Program provides a low-threshold engagement that includes peer programs, case management, primary care access, support groups and socialization. Many are referred to mental health services prior to assessment due to the acuity of their needs.

Homeless or System Involved TAY


Huckleberry Youth Programs/TAY Multi-Service Center

The target population is low-income African American, Latino or Asian Pacific Islander TAY (16-24) exposed to trauma and involved or at-risk of entering the justice system – with physical and behavioral health needs. Many participants may be already involved with the Community Assessment and Resource Center, which focuses on the 16-17 year olds. The program will include street outreach, mental health assessment and support, case management and positive youth development services. 

Larkin Street Youth Services/ROUTZ TAY Housing & ROUTZ TAY Wellness

The target population is TAY youth with serious mental illness from all of San Francisco. This high intensity, longer term program includes housing and supportive services, including wraparound case management, mental health intervention and counseling, peer-based counseling, and life skills development.

Mental Health Consultation & Capacity Building

The San Francisco Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation Initiative (ECMHCI) is
grounded in the evidence-based work of mental health professionals who provide support to children, parents and caregivers of San Francisco’s youngest residents (ages 0-5) and are delivered in the following settings: center-based and family child care, homeless and domestic violence shelters, permanent supportive housing facilities, family resource centers, and substance abuse treatment centers. The Initiative is made possible through a partnership between four county agencies: San Francisco’s Department of Public Health/Behavioral Health Services; the Office of Early Care and Education; the Department of Children, Youth, and Their Families; and First 5 San Francisco. Funding 10for the Initiative is contributed by all four county departments, as well as funds provided by the MHSA.

Mental health consultation and capacity building services include case consultation, program consultation, training and support/capacity building for staff and parents, referrals for specialized services (e.g., developmental and learning assessments, occupational therapy, help with Individualized Education Plans, and psychotherapy), therapeutic play groups, direct psychotherapeutic intervention with children and families, crisis intervention, parent education and support groups, and advocacy for families. These services are designed to capitalize on the important role of early intervention in enhancing the success of children and families facing early developmental challenges.

The primary service providers for the ECMHCI program are:

    1. Infant Parent Program/Day Care Consultants
    2. Edgewood Center for Children and Families
    3. Richmond Area Multi-Services
    4. Homeless Children’s Network
    5. Instituto Familiar de la Raza

Comprehensive Crisis Services

Comprehensive crisis response and stabilization services have long been considered a crucial element of public behavioral health systems. Due to the pressing need for services to address the needs of children, youth, adults and families impacted by violence and mental health crisis—a need that has been highlighted through various MHSA Community Program Planning efforts—MHSA PEI funding supported a significant expansion of crisis response services in 2009.


Services and Target Populations

Mobile Crisis

Provides behavioral health crisis triage, in-the-field crisis assessments/interventions, & short-term crisis case management for individuals age 18 years or older.

Child Crisis

Offers 5150 assessments & crisis intervention for suicidal, homicidal, gravely disabled and out of control children and adolescents regardless of health insurance status.  Clients with publically funded health insurance or have no health insurance are provided crisis case management, hospital discharge planning, and medication support services.

Crisis Response

Provides mobile response to homicides, critical shootings, stabbings, and suicides; provides clinical support, therapy, and crisis case management services to individuals and families affected by community violence and critical incidents.