KVC knows that a healthy brain leads to a healthy child. A healthy child leads to a healthy community. And in those healthy communities there are greater opportunities for healthy families to flourish. KVC’s MyLink program is an innovative telehealth and distance learning program that serves thousands across America. MyLink is a robust, HIPAA-compliant video conferencing program that gives children in foster care increased access to therapeutic and crisis intervention services, and also delivers continuing education opportunities to foster parents in the home. These benefits are especially important to the children we serve in rural areas.
KVC MyLink is the only project of its kind in the child welfare sector; the program equips children in foster care with iPads so that can directly connect to behavioral healthcare services such as therapy and ongoing education via video. This expansion will connect over 1,000 foster homes across Kansas, Nebraska, West Virginia and Kentucky where KVC works.
MyLink in not only changing everyday life for thousands of children and families; it also has the potential to change the trajectory of some young people’s lives forever. Children who have experienced physical or sexual abuse or neglect and who live in rural, underserved regions need support.
Brain science is critical to the program planning by KVC. With the cutting edge research, our goal is for our communities to become better informed about the needs of youth and that everyone has the capacity to engage a child in their community. It is imperative that we engage with adults and youth who are experiencing a mental health crisis in a different way than before. With the knowledge that brains are constantly growing, paired with a trauma informed mindset, we realize improving timely and quality access to care is critical to solving a large mental health need for services across the country, especially for children and families engaged in foster care. What happened to these families and how we help them overcome barriers that lie before them is essential to their long term success.
For families to feel supported, we have built a multitude of tools for them to utilize. Our staff has been fortunate enough to work with the Washington D.C. Department of Human Services in their foster care program, within school systems to strengthen family services and creating trauma informed cultures, training foster parents across the country on trauma, training police departments on trauma and its impact, training staff members from Kansas’ Department for Children and Families on trauma informed care, and we lead the Midwest Trauma Training Center in partnership with NYU. KVC is engaged internationally with Singapore to move towards community-based care from their current congregate care model.