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|VIP Expands Services to Care for Most Vulnerable|
Last year, as we looked at the gaps in services and our ability to intervene, we recognized that more and more children were seeking out mental health treatment who did not meet our eligibility requirements. All services at VIP are free. VIP receives funding from county and state agencies to provide mental health care to specific populations of children who qualify for Medi-Cal. For instance, all children placed in the foster care system are covered under Medi-Cal.
But more and more families were seeking out services for children who did not qualify for Medi-Cal. Primarily, these are children who have been victimized in some way, maybe by someone outside the immediate family, and are not removed from their homes by social services. Because they are not detained and put into foster care they do not automatically qualify for state sponsored health coverage. If their families cannot qualify and they lack the resources to purchase private insurance, they are left without options to help their children.
These children need help to heal from their abuse, control their post-traumatic stress, and ultimately find a positive path in life in order to break the cycle of violence. VIP did not want to keep turning children away since our expertise is so vital to their long-term success. Thankfully, last summer, the Eisner Foundation and the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation recognized the importance of not denying any child in need, and chose to fund a pilot project to provide crisis intervention and mental health services to children who might otherwise go without.
The program is showing great results both for clients and for staff. VIP has been able to open its doors even wider and provide the same high level of comprehensive therapy and case management services to an even larger population. Earlier this year, the Milagro Foundation, a longtime VIP supporter, awarded us a grant earlier to help expand our specialized services for children and families dealing with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders to this same uninsured population.
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