Charter of the North Sound YFC

Purpose and Function

YFC is the Family, Youth, and System Partner Round Table (FYSPRT) for the North Sound region of Washington State, which includes Snohomish, Skagit, Whatcom, Island, and San Juan Counties. YFC, and all Washington State FYSPRTs, provides an equitable forum for families, youth, systems, and communities to discuss issues related to the child/youth behavioral health system of care. YFC strengthens sustainable resources by providing community-based approaches to address the individualized behavioral health needs of children, youth, and families. YFC leverages the experiences and expertise of all participants dedicated to building seamless behavioral health services, and:

  1. Provides a working partnership among family, youth, systems, and community partners that brings a broad perspective to build and strengthen relationships inclusive of family/youth voice in decision-making processes.

  2. Identifies family, youth, systems, and community needs.

  3. Creates options and opportunities to address family and youth priorities.

  4. Promotes family- and youth-driven solutions to address system challenges and barriers

  5. Develops common ground through mutual learning amongst all participants.

  6. Provides leadership and influence for the establishment and sustainability of Washington State Children’s Behavioral Health System.

  7. Provides input on long-term strategies in support of fully implementing changes to Washington State Children’s Behavioral Health System.

  8. Ensures accountability and effectiveness through evaluation of meetings.

Primary Functions

YFC supports and tracks the six goals of the Washington state System of Care:

  1. Infuse System of Care values in all child-serving systems.

  2. Expand and sustain effective leadership roles for families, youth, and system partners.

  3. Establish an appropriate array of services and resources statewide, including home and community-based services.

  4. Develop and strengthen a workforce that will operationalize System of Care values.

  5. Build a strong data management system to inform decision-making and track outcomes.

  6. Develop sustainable financing and align funding to ensure services are seamless for children, youth, and families.

Decision-Making Responsibilities

 

YFC utilizes a tri-lead model of leadership wherein the monthly regional agenda is created in collaboration by a youth, a family, and a system tri-lead. YFC members and other members of the community may request to raise an issue at a YFC meeting by contacting the convener or a tri-lead. The tri-leads decide whether to add the issue to a future agenda, how long the issue will be discussed, and will decide who is responsible for facilitating the discussion.

YFC employs a modified consensus model of decision-making wherein issues are introduced and clarified before they are opened for group discussion. Once the group has had time to process the issue - exploring ideas as broadly as possible - the facilitator will form a proposal based on the group’s input. The group then helps the facilitator amend the proposal until broad agreement is reached among everyone present at the meeting.

01

Introduce and clarify the issue

Share background information. Work out the remit of the discussion.

     - i.e. What questions do you need to decide about now?

02

Open out the discussion

Make space for everyone to share their needs and opinions before launching into trying to solve the problem. If ideas come up already, you could hear them briefly, then park them for the next stage.

03

Explore ideas in a broad discussion

Come up with lots of different ways forward. Explore the pros and cons of different options. Identify key concerns, needs and objectives

04

Form a proposal

Look for a solution that meets everyone's most important needs. This might involve weaving together elements of different ideas.

05

Amend the proposal 

Look for changes that will make the proposal even stronger.

06

Test for agreement

Clearly state the proposal and check whether there is real agreement. Starting by asking for who is against the proposal makes it easier for people to voice their concerns. E.g.:

     Any blocks?

     Any stand-asides? 

     Any reservations?

     Do we have consensus?

If you have a block, or too many stand asides you will need to go back a stage, and amend the proposal further, or create a new one.

07

Work out how to implement the decision

Work out what needs to happen, by when, and who will do it!

If a decision must be made quickly but a consensus cannot be reached, a quorum of the membership (that is, fifty-one percent of the membership) may vote on the matter as a last resort.

Membership

YFC membership is comprised of family, youth and system partner tri-leads and other representatives of child-serving systems and community members. A “member” is a participant who attends at least two meetings every six months.

Meetings are open to the public so participants outside the membership are welcome to attend and provide input and feedback regarding community needs.

YFC actively recruits community leaders who reflect the diversity in the community to better conduct business in ways that benefit all the children, youth, and families the regional system of care serves.

 

Role of YFC Members

 

YFC leverages the experiences, expertise, and insight of key individuals, organizations, and departments that are committed to building a system of care for children’s behavioral health. Regional FYSPRT members are not directly responsible for managing project activities but provide support and guidance for those who do. Thus, individually, members will:

 

  • Through education, collaboration, and participation influence the movement toward the infusion of system of care values and principles in community organization, workforce development, policies, practice, financing, and structural change.

  • Bring community, individual, and agency strengths in completing necessary tasks.

  • Identify barriers/challenges and approaches to address issues.

  • Identify strengths/initiatives/projects of existing community and system agencies that support system of care values and principles.

  • Educate our system of care partners as we develop and grow.

  • Develop problem-solving approaches for moving forward.

Role of the Tri-Leads

Tri-leads are expected to:

  • Develop the regional agenda

  • Facilitate meetings

  • Attend the statewide FYPSRT twice per year

    • Elevate issues at the statewide FYSPRT

    • Bring information from the statewide FYSPRT to YFC

  • Create and maintain connections with leaders in the community

  • Perform outreach and engagement activities

  • Participate in special projects

  • Represent YFC at community meetings and bring information back to the regional meeting

  • Attend trainings as requested by the Health Care Authority or the convener

Youth and family tri-leads are expected to leverage their experiences of either accessing services or supporting someone in doing so to guide the activities of the group.

The family and system tri-leads and the convener are expected to partner with the youth tri-lead by assisting them in building competencies in leadership and systems advocacy.

The convener and the system tri-lead are expected to share their knowledge about systems to partner with the family and youth tri-leads who may not yet have the information they need to realize their visions for change.

Role of the Convener

 

North Sound Behavioral Health Administrative Services Organization (North Sound BH-ASO) - the convener – works with the tri-leads to ensure meeting tasks and deliverables are completed by providing administrative support such as organizing, paying for meeting space, and arranging technology to support remote meetings. The convener also promotes and supports YFC to fulfill its function within the Washington State Children’s Behavioral Health Governance Structure (see diagram below), in alignment with Washington State’s Children’s Behavioral Health Principles and the FYSPRT Manual. The convener is responsible for recruiting and onboarding new tri-leads, fiscal management, aiding in the recruitment of new members, and gathering information required by the Health Care Authority in its contract with the North Sound Behavioral Health Administrative Services Organization. 

 

Ad Hoc Committees and Partnerships

As needed, the tri-leads and/or the convener may participate in ad hoc committees or hold meetings in partnership with other organizations to address needs in a collaborative manner, including youth, family, and system partner voice.

Communication

YFC’s tri-leads bring information from the statewide FYSPRT to YFC’s regional meetings for information sharing in their community. Tri-leads also bring concerns and themes from their regional meetings to the statewide FYSPRT as needed.

When problem-solving around an item or situation is needed, regional members will first contact their regional tri-leads for dialogue and brainstorming. If needed and appropriate, the item or situation will be added to a future regional YFC agenda. If the item or situation is not addressed within the regional YFC meeting(s), or after outreach to regional entities, YFC’s tri-leads may submit the need to the statewide FYSPRT tri-leads using the Challenge and Solution Submission Form, including recommendations from YFC’s members about how to meet the need. Statewide FYSPRT tri-leads will review the need submitted and the recommendations to determine next steps, including a reach back to YFC for more information and/or possible addition to a future statewide FYSPRT agenda.

Communication Responsibilities of Tri-leads

  • Create agenda for their regional meetings.

  • Attend statewide FYSPRT meetings and report meeting updates and outcomes to their regional FYSPRT. Post meeting notes and schedules to the website.

  • Maintain communication with community members and work groups.

  • Use the communication diagram and process as appropriate.

  • Participate in information sharing, for example: sharing solutions among other regional FYSPRTs.

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Regional Meetings

YFC meets the second Monday of every month from 4-6 PM. Virtual attendance is always an option, and the location changes periodically according to the needs of members and the availability of meeting space. The meeting agenda is set by the tri-leads based on input from YFC members and other members of the community. The agenda, including the physical meeting location, is posted to the website and distributed to membership via email at least one week before each meeting occurs.

 

Tri-Leads facilitate regional meetings according to the agreements set out in YFC’s Working Assumptions agreement, introduce speakers, lead discussions, and greet people as they join the meeting. The convener takes minutes. The Working Assumptions are group norms that members agree to abide by at the start of each meeting. These change according to the needs of the group.

 

Each YFC meeting begins with a Land Acknowledgement statement in recognition that the North Sound region is the ancestral home of the Coast Salish People. YFC recognizes the importance of building community with each of the eight tribes in the North Sound region and acknowledges that the Land Acknowledgement statement does not replace the vital work of building community and promoting healing.

Data Analysis

 

YFC analyzes a data set relevant to the child/youth behavioral health system of care on a quarterly basis. Twice per year, YFC is required to review data generated by the Wraparound with Intensive Services (WISe) providers in the region in the Behavioral Health Assessment Solution (BHAS) reports.

Meeting Effectiveness

 

On a quarterly basis, YFC evaluates the effectiveness of regional meetings using the FYSPRT Evaluation Tool.

Strategic Planning

 

YFC engages in strategic planning guided the requirements set forth in the Health Care Authority’s contract with North Sound BH-ASO (the convener). YFC tri-leads and members work together to create goals, objectives, and action steps based on community needs and supported by YFC’s annual Strengths and Needs Assessment.

 

The Work Plan must include at least four priority areas: goals/action steps/those assigned/timelines for core activities, including but not limited to outreach/recruitment; training/leadership development; diversity, equity, and inclusion; special projects; areas of planning focus; social marketing; etc. The Work Plan will include information on how YFC members will work collaboratively to support meeting the needs of these priorities, and any additional effort to identify priorities for action and needs for improvement.

 

The convener provides quarterly reports to the Health Care Authority describing any progress towards completing action steps in the Strategic Plan. The convener is also responsible for sharing information contained in this quarterly report with YFC members.

Strengths and Needs Assessment

At least every other year, YFC assesses the region’s child/youth behavioral health system of care. The design of this assessment is tailored to the needs of the region. For instance, YFC may collect data from stakeholders and partners (including YFC members and other system, family, youth, and community stakeholders and partners). YFC might also review and interpret WISe data, data from another data set concerning child/youth behavioral health, and potentially use data from the University of Washington Evidence Based Practice Institute, state and local reports on system performance, and any other data available. With this information, YFC documents strengths and prioritize needs for improvement on priority needs for children, youth, families, programs, services, local supports, and system development in the region. The final report may outline some or all of the following:

 

  • Priority needs for children, youth and families, programs, services, local supports, and system development.

  • Regional strengths and barriers with regard to the sustainability of YFC.

  • Recommendations regarding the maintenance and operation of YFC.

  • Recommendations and a proposed timeline for the development of local YFC chapters, if determined they are needed by the region.

  • Connections to other local community and Tribal partner and Urban Indian Organization groups to enhance the work of the regional FYSPRT.

  • Resources available that promote social marketing of the Washington State Children’s Behavioral Health Principles, and behavioral health awareness.

  • Resource needs (for example, requests for technical assistance, training, family/youth leadership development needs).