I hope your 2023 has started on a positive note!
While we are grateful for the accomplishments of last year with more than 3,000 children served, we recognize the community's need to expand behavioral and mental health services. To continue our prevention and early intervention services, I would like to share the Baker Act exams historic new highs among children in Florida.
A new report* shows more than 38,000 exams were done on kids during 2020-2021. This is an increase of 77% just in the last decade. This data further supports what we already know; that children and families in our community are desperate for help, healing, and hope.
Boys Town South Florida is positioned to respond to this crisis. We are looking forward in 2023 to growing our programs and expanding our reach so we can increase our capabilities to serve even more at-risk children and families. We have expanded our Pediatric Behavioral Health Clinic and added more Psychologists who are English/Spanish bilingual. We are hoping to expand our school-based interventions through the LIFT Together with Boys TownSM and Primary Project Program to ensure every student and their families are set up for educational success to include their social/emotional wellbeing.
We are also hoping to expand our services in Broward County to ensure we are prepared to meet that need. We can't do it alone, we rely on our supporters, donors and community partners to effect positive change and enable us to help more families. We welcome an opportunity to share more about what we are doing through our community-based programs to be a change agent in our community and ask you to consider joining us by supporting our Mission.
Bethany LaceyExecutive Director
Christy, A., Jenkins, K., Rhode, S., Barnes, A., Bogovic, S., Deaton, L., and Dion, C. (2022). Baker Act Reporting Center Fiscal Year 2020-2021 Report. Tampa, FL: University of South Florida, Department of Mental Health Law and Policy, Baker Act Reporting Center.