People can and do make positive changes in their lives. Family First provides Colorado with the opportunity to offer more proactive services to support parents in addressing their challenges and seeking help. Prior to Family First, federal funding could only be used if a child or teen was growing up outside of their home and their family met certain income qualifications. Now, federal funding is available to keep families together and there are no income guidelines. Prevention services must be trauma-informed, evidence-based, approved, and subject to a well-designed and rigorous evaluation.
In March 2022, the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) submitted a draft of the state's prevention plan to the federal government. That Plan was approved Sept. 28 after a review by the Children's Bureau, a federal agency organized under the United States Department of Health and Human Services' Administration for Children and Families.
Skill-based parenting training
Eligible parent skill-based programs and services include those that are psychological, educational or behavioral interventions or treatments that work directly with a parent or caregiver. Children may be present or involved, and contact with a parent or caregiver may be face-to-face, over the telephone or video, or online. Programs may be delivered in a traditional home environment or in a residential facility, shelter or prison where a parent or caregiver lives.
Mental health services
Family First eligible mental health services are those that aim to reduce or eliminate behavioral and emotional disorders or risk for such disorders. Programs and services may target any mental health issue and participants are not required to have a diagnosis. Eligible programs and services can be delivered to children and teens, adults or families.
Substance abuse prevention and treatment
Family First eligible substance abuse prevention and treatment programs and services are those that have an explicit focus on the prevention, reduction, treatment, remediation and/or elimination of substance use, misuse or exposure in general of alcohol, marijuana, illicit drugs, or misuse of prescription or over-the-counter drugs. Eligible programs and services can be delivered to children and teens, adults or families.
Frequently asked questions about prevention services
What services are available? Who is eligible to receive these services? Answers to these questions and more in our FAQ section.