Programs & Services
Family Solutions provides a comprehensive range of mental health services for children, youth and their families living in Southwest Washington. Services are funded through state insurance (Medicaid), select commercial insurance plans, grants and private donations. Our clients range in age from 3 to 21 years.
Our highly qualified staff are prepared to provide treatment and support for the following conditions/situations and more:
We have Spanish, Russian, and Korean speaking therapists on staff to provide services for members of our community needing services in these languages. When necessary, we engage interpreters to join the treatment teams of clients speaking other languages.
Children and their families can access our services at our main office located in East Vancouver. In addition, Family Solutions partners with Vancouver School District, Evergreen School District, and Ridgefield School District to provide therapeutic services at select local schools. Virtual appointments are also available if this is determined to best meet a client’s needs.
Individual and Family Therapy
Our clinical staff provide client-centered, “trauma-informed care,” a therapeutic approach that focuses on collaboration, empowerment and safety as foundations for successful therapist-client relationships.
We may utilize a number of strategies to address your family’s specific needs. For instance, our staff are trained in a variety of evidence-based practices such as play therapy for young children, cognitive behavioral therapy and EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) for trauma recovery. Family Solutions also has a dedicated art therapy space for clients interested in working with trained art therapists.
Children do well when their families do well. Therefore, family therapy may also be an important part of a child’s treatment. Our therapists value family relationships highly and will work to include all family members when possible.
We also recognize that clients may have a number of people in their lives who provide them with important emotional support and care but to whom they are not necessarily biologically related. This is their self-identified family. When appropriate, we can involve a self-identified family in our clients’ treatment.
By providing services at area schools, our goal is to eliminate the barriers that often make it difficult for working families to participate in outpatient therapy. The school-based team at Family Solutions provides therapeutic services to children, youth and families at schools in the Evergreen School District, Vancouver School District and Ridgefield School District.
Our therapists in the schools work closely with school staff to make sure our clients’ academic and mental health goals go hand-in-hand. Therapy may take place during or outside of school hours, depending on your family’s needs. Plus, we offer school-based services throughout the year, even when schools are closed for summer break.
To find out if we provide services in your school, please contact your school counselor or call our office. For more information on obtaining school-based services, please see our page “Enrolling in Services.”
We facilitate a variety of therapy groups in which children, youth and families receive support as well as learn and practice new skills with peers. Our group offerings vary according to client interest and need. Your therapist can provide you with an up-to-date list of groups that are meeting now.
To give you a sense of what might be available to you at Family Solutions, here is a list of therapy groups we’ve facilitated in the past:
Group Therapy options:
- Parent Support Coffee Hour: this group is an informal opportunity for parents to connect with one another and receive support for a variety of needs they may be facing. It is a virtual group offered on a drop-in basis.
- Collaborative Problem Solving: a group for parents of teenagers, Collaborative Problem Solving is an approach to managing the challenging behaviors of children and adolescents. It has been demonstrated over time to be effective in reducing oppositional behavior and the challenges that accompany them.
- Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) Teen Group: Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a cognitive behavioral treatment that is recognized as the gold standard in psychological treatment for chronically suicidal individuals. Research has shown that it is effective in treating disorders such as substance dependence, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and eating disorders.
- Art Therapy Open Studio: A group space that allows clients to express themselves through making art of their choosing with the guidance of a licensed art therapist.
- CBITS: CBITS is an evidenced-based intervention helping children and youth manage trauma reactions by building skills for relaxation, challenging unsettling thoughts, social problem solving, and processing traumatic memories/grief.
LGBTQIA+ parent and youth groups: These groups are designed for youth identifying as part of the LGBTQ community who are also experiencing mental health needs. Topics cover concepts such as labels, coming out, Queer history, and vulnerability. Parent groups provide education and empowerment for parents of LGBTQIA+ children. Parent groups provide mutual support and empathy towards one another to help better understand the mental health needs of their children.
Psychiatric Eval. & Medication Mgmt
Family Solutions knows there are times when you might consider using medication as part of your child’s wellness plan. If you believe medication might have a role in your child’s wellness, we invite you to consider a psychiatric evaluation with our child and adolescent psychiatrists or nurse practitioners.
If medication does become a part of treatment, your therapist and medical provider will work with you to manage medications effectively. Then, when your care at Family Solutions is complete, we will help you transition to care with an outside healthcare provider.
At your first appointment, we will take a full assessment of your child’s mental health needs and talk with you about their early development and early childhood experiences, their physical health and wellness, and their current strengths and challenges. We’ll also discuss the goals you have for your child.
Following this assessment, your lead therapist will work with you to develop a personalized plan of care to help your child and your family grow in wellness. We pair each client with a lead therapist who has the training and qualifications that will best serve the client in their particular situation. Once they’ve gotten a chance to learn about you and your goals, this lead therapist pulls in additional support from other members of the Family Solutions team, giving you a comprehensive suite of services that are tailored to meet your family’s unique needs.
Family Support Services are provided by Family Support Specialists who lead face-to-face educational and/or experiential activities with individual children and, potentially, their family members. These activities, which are sometimes called “behavioral interventions,” are designed to increase our clients’ knowledge about mental health issues and treatment.
Activities may focus on:
- Symptom management (decreasing anxiety, improving anger management skills)
- Behavior management
- Stress management
- Improvement of daily living skills and development of independent living skills
- Social skills building
- Problem solving skills
Family Support Specialists are responsible for leading behavioral interventions for children and their families in the child’s home, school, or within the community. For example, as needed, Family Support Specialists might provide treatment at a local park, your child’s school or at other community locations.
Additionally, Family Support Specialists connect clients with needed resources and coordinate treatment with outside individuals or agencies.
Peer Support is, essentially, support provided by someone who has walked in your shoes.
At Family Solutions, Peer Support is provided by a staff member who has self-identified as having received mental health services in the past or as being the caregiver of a child with special, mental health related needs. Peer Counselors have received specialized training provided by the Mental Health Division of Washington State and the support they provide is always under the consultation, facilitation or supervision of a qualified mental health professional who understands rehabilitation and recovery.
Family Solutions’ Peer Support program engages clients in scheduled activities that promote socialization, recovery, self-advocacy, development of natural supports and maintenance of community living skills.
Peer Counselors provide different kinds of support to each client, depending on the client’s treatment plan at Family Solutions. There are a number of techniques Peer Counselors might use to offer support, including:
- Identifying services and activities that promote wellness and recovery by instilling hope and decreasing stigma associated with mental health challenges
- Sharing anecdotes from their own or their child’s recovery that are relevant to the obstacles faced by people receiving mental health services
- Promoting a sense of personal engagement and investment in their child’s recovery
- Implementing recovery practices in the broad arena of health care system
- Facilitating a wide range of activities that help parents and caregivers regain control over their own lives and over their child’s recovery process (e.g., promoting socialization, self advocacy, developing natural supports, establishing stable living arrangements, education)
- Serving as a client / family advocate
- Providing clients with information and peer support in a range of settings
- Modeling recovery and ongoing use of coping skills
Coordination of Care
Family Solutions works to coordinate with any other care providers or assistance agencies that may already be involved in the lives of our clients. We’ll communicate with these community partners to ensure everyone is up to date on the details of your child’s treatment and we’ll also advocate on your behalf to make sure everyone is prepared to support you in attaining your wellness goals.
Finally, we’ll make sure you fully understand every aspect of your treatment plan and that your informed input is central to every decision made by our team.
Our Community Support Team (CST) is a specialized, multidisciplinary treatment team that includes therapists, family support specialists, peer support counselors, and psychiatric providers. CST services are available based on individual need and are accessible to some of our most vulnerable and at-risk youth. Services are provided in various community locations to best meet the needs of your family.
At Family Solutions, we believe treatment does not only occur in the therapy office. Our team of providers includes various support people whose goal is to foster wellness in a client’s natural environment. During the course of treatment, your therapist may invite you to use a range of support services that offer opportunities to practice new skills in your home, at the playground or in your school.
You may also find it helpful to talk with another parent or young adult who has walked in your shoes and can offer the perspective of “having been there.”
Support services are often utilized while you are also working with your therapist, but they may be part of your plan as you are ending your therapy work and just need a little extra support as you begin to ease out of treatment. You and your therapist will decide together if these services are right for you or your family.
Clothing Closet & Backpack Program
With the help of volunteers and donations, we have clothing, coats, and shoes available for both children and adults. Clothing is washed and sorted before being made available. Perhaps you or your child is in need of the basics, or perhaps you need something for a specific occasion. Any member of your child’s treatment team can assist you with access to the clothing closet.
Family Solutions partners with Share of Vancouver and participates in their Meal and Nutrition Program, also known as The Backpack Program. The program is offered during the school year to provide a small bag of non-perishable food to families on Thursday’s between 10:00am and 3:00pm. To inquire about access to this program, please contact a member of our peer support team.
Family Solutions understands families have needs beyond their mental health treatment. We invite you to enjoy a walk on the grounds, find a quiet space in the lobby to recharge, or take advantage of the other resources we are pleased to make available.