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Alexander Youth Network FAQs

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Q: What is Alexander Youth Network?

A: Alexander Youth Network is a 501(c)(3), North Carolina nonprofit corporation that provides quality professional treatment to children with, or at risk of, serious emotional disturbance (SED) and behavioral problems.

Q: What does severely emotionally disturbed (SED) mean?

A: The term refers to children who are not necessarily developmentally disabled, but due to a diagnosed mental health problem are unable to function in a normal social setting and to form normal family and peer relationships. Their emotional disturbance may cause them to be unsuccessful in school and cause them to lag behind peers scholastically. Emotional disturbances are also sometimes referred to as mental or behavioral problems. An SED can be anything from Attention Deficit Disorder to Psychosis. Most of the children treated at Alexander suffer from SED’s severe enough to significantly impair their ability to be successful in their daily endeavors. Treatment is usually geared toward solving the problems that are causing their illness, or helping children develop skills to cope with more chronic problems so that they can enjoy their childhood and grow into successful young adults.

Q: Are the children in Alexander’s programs mentally ill?

A: Most children in Alexander’s programs have a mental health diagnosis. Some programs work with children who are at risk, meaning that due to social and environmental circumstances they could develop problems unless there is intervention.

Q: How is Alexander Youth Network funded?

A: Alexander Youth Network is a nonprofit corporation that is funded through fees for service, government programs such as Medicaid, private insurance, as well as generous individuals, foundations, churches and corporations. Fees cover only about 85% of the cost of providing treatment. Each year, Alexander must raise approximately $3 million to bridge the gap between the actual cost of the care we provide and the level at which we receive reimbursement.

Q: How many children do you serve?

A: Alexander served over 8,250 children during its fiscal year ending September 30, 2017.

Q: What makes Alexander Youth Network different from other children’s mental health agencies?

A: Alexander treats some of the most severe mental health cases in the state and offers the broadest array of services to meet the needs of the children and families suffering from mental health problems.

Q: What programs and services does Alexander Youth Network offer?

A: Alexander provides over a dozen programs falling into two main categories: residential and community-based. Clients in Alexander’s psychiatric residential treatment program live at Alexander’s southeast-Charlotte campus while undergoing treatment. Non-residential or community-based programs include mental health diagnostic assessment, day treatment, outpatient therapy, Multisystemic Therapy (MST), Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care, Therapeutic Foster Care Homes, and Intensive In-Home Therapy.

Q: What effect does your work have on our community?

A: One in 10 youth has serious mental health problems that are severe enough to impair how they function at home, school or in the community, yet research shows that only 20% are identified and receive mental health services. Alexander Youth Network is working to change those statistics.

Alexander’s services touch thousands of children a year helping many of them recapture their childhood and return to active community participation. Helping children overcome mental health disabilities helps reduce later incidence of crime, substance abuse, parental abuse and neglect, and other social ills.

Q: How can I help Alexander Youth Network?

A: Alexander offers a variety of ways to get involved – volunteering, monetary and in-kind contributions, and speaking out as an advocate for children’s mental health.