Infant reaching out to caress parents faceThis area of the website includes information about infant and early mental health initiatives in California, organizations promoting infant and early mental health and research on brain development.


California Center for Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health

The California Center for Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health assists policymakers, funders and organizations to design and implement high-quality practices that promote the healthy social and emotional development of children under the age of five.



Central California Perinatal Mental Health Collaborative (CCPMHC)

The Central California Perinatal Mental Health Collaborative is dedicated to diminishing the silent epidemic of depression and anxiety during pregnancy and postpartum. Through education and outreach, we work to raise awareness about how to recognize signs of depression and anxiety in women and then find local resources to help cultivate a circle of support for women suffering from this condition.


Early Connections-Alameda County System of Care

To connect and strengthen services, supports, environments and policies across systems in Alameda County to promote well being of young children birth to five experiencing — or at significant risk — for social, emotional, behavioral and developmental concerns, and their families throughout life.


Help Me Grow

Help Me Grow is a system that connects at-risk children with the services they need. HMG is an efficient and effective system — with a proven track record — that assists states in identifying at-risk children, then helps families find community-based programs and services.

HMG does not provide direct services. Rather, it is a system for improving access to existing resources and services for children through age eight. Over 25 states are implementing Help Me Grow, including California. Currently, nine California counties are affiliates of Help Me Grow National: Alameda, Contra Costa, Fresno, San Bernardino, San Francisco, San Joaquin, Orange, Solano, and Ventura. Many other counties in California are part of the Help Me Grow Learning Community that are in the process of developing the components of the Help Me Grow system. For more information contact Patsy Hampton at patsy@first5association.org.


Infant Development Association of California (IDA)

P.O. Box 189550
Sacramento, CA 95818-9550
Telephone: 916-453-8801
Fax: 916-453-0627
Email: mail@idaofcal.org

The Infant Development Association of California (IDA) is a multidisciplinary organization of parents and professionals committed to optimal developmental and positive social and emotional outcomes for infants, birth to three, with a broad range of special needs and their families. IDA advocates improved, effective prevention and early intervention services while providing information, education, and training to parents, professionals, decision makers, and others.


Mental Health Services Act Prevention and Early Intervention (MHSA PEI)

The passage of Proposition 63 (now known as the Mental Health Services Act or MHSA (PDF)) in November 2004 provides an opportunity for the California Department of Mental Health (DMH) to provide increased funding, personnel and other resources to support county mental health programs and monitor progress toward statewide goals for children, transition age youth, adults, older adults and families. The Act addresses a broad continuum of prevention, early intervention and service needs and the necessary infrastructure, technology and training elements that will effectively support this system.


Project ABC

Project ABC (Los Angeles County) is designed to create a system of care for young children who are in need of mental health services in the Los Angeles area. Our goal is ensure that children birth to five years have access to mental health services that are family-centered, strength-based, and culturally competent. Families are the focus of our efforts and are key partners in everything we do. Parents are responsible for ensuring the family voice is the driving force in the treatment of children with emotional and behavioral problems. Family voice and choice is essential to obtaining the best care for our children. Site includes resources for parents, caregivers, professionals and includes tip sheets, video and radio.

  • Tip Sheets
    Include topics such as “10 Things to Know About Infant Mental Health”
  • Videos
    Videos include “Tantrums Happen!”, “Rough Day”, and “All Babies Cry”.
  • ResourcesSome resources also available in Chinese, Korean and Spanish

Project Connect North Bay Regional Center (NBRC)

Project Connect NBRC is a three-year project that focuses on mental health and wellness of young children (birth-five years old). The project, supported through funds from the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) from the California Department of Developmental Services (DDS), is specifically intended to identify and address critical need areas within Napa, Sonoma, and Solano Counties. The aim of the project is to promote the development of an inter-organizational system of coordinated, culturally appropriate infant-family and early childhood mental health services that support young children’s social-emotional health and well-being in these three counties.


Project LAUNCH

Nationwide, grantees are pioneering new ways to promote young child wellness through Project LAUNCH (Linking Actions for Unmet Needs in Children’s Health), a federal initiative funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The population of focus is children ages birth to 8. The goal is for all children to enter school with the social, emotional, cognitive, and physical skills they need to succeed. Over five years, Project LAUNCH grantees work to increase the quality and availability of evidence-based programs for children and families, build infrastructure, and improve coordination across child-serving systems. All Project LAUNCH grantees are expected to demonstrate local policy and practice improvements that can be sustained across the state, tribe, or territory. 

  • A November 2016 publication, Implementation of Young Child Wellness Strategies in a Unique Cohort of Local Communities, describes the innovative, community-level strategies used by six grantees used to improve outcomes for children, families and communities, and shares their lessons learned as they sought to bring policy and practice improvements to scale, enhance infrastructure, and implement direct services. The e-Book is rich with creative approaches, lessons learned, and illustrative data from communities that can inform future early childhood efforts both within and outside of the LAUNCH community.

Statewide Screening Collaborative (SSC)

The Statewide Screening Collaborative (SSC) is an interagency and multidisciplinary group formed to enhance the capacity of the state to promote and deliver effective and well-coordinated health, developmental, and early mental health screenings throughout California. The SSC works to identify and address service gaps by improving the synergies among state programs involved in recognition and response activities and adopting a common language, standard tools and screening protocols for families and children that affect healthy childhood development.


We Can’t Wait Annual Conference -San Diego ECMH Conference

6th Annual Early Childhood Mental Health
We Can’t Wait Conference
Trauma Informed Care: A Lifelong Perspective for Living Well
September 17- 19, 2015
Crowne Plaza Hotel
2270 Hotel Circle North
San Diego, CA 92108
Keynote by Dr. Bruce Perry


Link to WestEd Center for Child & Family Studies website

Working Together for Inclusion & Belonging | 751 Rancheros Drive, Suite 2, San Marcos, CA 92069

Copyright © 2012 WestEd. All Rights Reserved.