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Youth Mental Health Call for Applications: FAQs

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Frequently Asked Questions

Download the FAQ sheet.

General Questions

WHAT IS THE NATIONAL COUNCIL FOR BEHAVIORAL HEALTH?

The National Council for Behavioral Health (National Council) is an organization based in Washington, D.C., that represents more than 2,900 organizations from across the country that provide services and supports for those living with mental health, addiction and other challenges.

Application and Submission Questions

DO I HAVE TO BE A NATIONAL COUNCIL MEMBER TO APPLY?

No. You do not have to be a National Council member to apply for this opportunity.
I AM NOT A MENTAL HEALTH PROVIDER/ORGANIZATION. CAN I STILL APPLY?

Absolutely! Applicants may include any organization or collaborative of multiple organizations that are passionate, motivated and experienced in improving mental health outcomes for young people, with emphasis on serving culturally diverse and/or underserved communities.

I WAS NOT ABLE TO SUBMIT MY EXPRESSION OF INTEREST BY OCTOBER 26. CAN I STILL APPLY?

Yes. You can still apply if you did not express interest by Friday, October 26. Please provide your contact information at your earliest convenience.
HOW LONG IS THE APPLICATION?

The application is comprised of four main components:

  1. A brief description of your organization, the community and the population you serve. (Up to 1,000 words.)
  2. A description of your organization’s experience with organizational change and implementing an approach, practice or program that aligns with the four primary categories including how it impacts young people and addresses gaps in engagement with services. (Up to 1,000 words.)
  3. A description of how you will ensure the necessary personnel, infrastructure and/or financial resources are in place to successfully support the pilot organization’s implementation and fully participate in the learning opportunity and all activities. (Up to 500 words.)
  4. A description of your experience integrating youth voice and perspective into your work and your commitment to do so throughout the learning opportunity. (Up to 500 words.)

You also have the option to submit a 15-minute video instead of providing written responses to these questions. If you are considering submitting a video, please see the Can I submit a video instead of written responses? question.

For more information, please visit the application platform.

WHAT TYPE OF EXPERIENCE ARE YOU LOOKING FOR IN MENTOR ORGANIZATIONS?

We are looking for both passion and experience. We seek mentor organizations that are passionate about their work and have a desire to pay it forward by supporting other organizations to achieve their goals and improve outcomes for young people. Your experience should be rooted in both organizational change and youth engagement in mental health supports to reduce the incidence of youth depression, anxiety and suicide. Considering that organizational change and youth mental health supports can take many forms, there are minimal parameters on the experience that can be described in the application. You should describe how your experience with organizational change prepares you to help an organization implement their own promising practice, including incorporation of youth voice. In describing your strengths engaging youth in mental health supports, your experience could be based on facilitating family bonding, fostering positive peer interaction, promoting healthy self-expression, providing behavioral health treatment, etc. Your description should also highlight your efforts with diverse populations from underserved communities.
WILL THE PILOT SITE REPLICATE MY APPROACH TO ENGAGING YOUTH IN MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORTS?

Not necessarily. Pilot sites applied for this learning opportunity by proposing their own approaches to engaging youth in mental health supports. As a mentor, your organization’s role will be to draw on your own experience implementing a promising approach to assist the pilot site with their implementation. We will strategically pair pilots and mentors based on the approach the pilot has proposed and the mentor’s experience as well as things like organization type, geography, community demographics and population of focus.

THE APPROACH I HAVE EXPERIENCE IMPLEMENTING DOES NOT FIT IN ONE OF THE CATEGORIES LISTED OR IT FITS IN MULTIPLE CATEGORIES. CAN I STILL APPLY?

Yes. If the approach you have experience implementing does not fall under one of the listed categories, please propose and briefly explain a new category in your application. If your approach fits into more than one category, please list the primary and secondary categories.

Current categories include:

  1. Partnerships: Increase connections between important players in the lives of young people that help ensure young people have timely and effective engagement in mental health supports. Partnerships can be either formal or informal and either within your organization or in the broader community.
  2. Increase Awareness: Increase a community’s knowledge about depression, anxiety and suicide in young people including connecting the broader community or family, peers or organizational staff in awareness building activities.
  3. Decrease Loneliness: Focus on adolescents and supports that contribute to positive connectivity with others.
  4. Clinical and Social Interventions: Connect young people to direct services or supports that improve adolescent mental health.

DOES MY PREVIOUSLY IMPLEMENTED APPROACH HAVE TO COVER THE FULL AGE RANGE OF THE POPULATION OF FOCUS (10-24 YEARS OLD)?

No. Your experience does not have to be in work that covers the full age range; it can be a subset of the age group (10-24 years old).
DOES MY EXPERIENCE HAVE TO BE IN AN EVIDENCE-BASED APPROACH?

Your experience does not have to be “evidence-based” in the traditional sense. However, your application should include how your work has demonstrated effectiveness for your population of focus.
I’M NOT SURE MY EXPERIENCE IS WHAT YOU’RE LOOKING FOR. IS THERE SOMEONE I CAN SPEAK WITH TO DISCUSS IF WHAT I AM THINKING IS A GOOD FIT?

Yes. You’re invited to join our virtual office hours on Thursday 10/25 or 11/1 from 2 to 3 p.m. ET. If you are not available at that time, you are welcome to email us and we would be happy to respond to your questions. Please contact Mohini Venkatesh at MohiniV@TheNationalCouncil.org.
CAN YOU TELL ME MORE ABOUT THE INCENTIVE PAYMENT?

The incentive payment (up to $50,000 per mentor organization) is intended to support your organization’s participation in the learning network as a mentor. This could include things like staff time, materials or supplies or other capacity building necessary to support pilots in their implementation and engage fully in the project. A portion of the funds will be paid up-front to assist with costs associated with participation. The remaining incentive payments will be allocated based on attaining specific milestones that will be identified collaboratively between the National Council, the mentor organization and the project’s evaluator. You are not required to submit a budget as part of your application.
CAN I SUBMIT A VIDEO INSTEAD OF WRITTEN RESPONSES?

Video submissions will be accepted in place of a written narrative. Video applications should be no longer than 15-minutes and should include a description of:

  1. Your organization and the community and the population you serve.
  2. Your organization’s experience implementing an approach, practice or program, including how it has impacted young people and addressed gaps in engagement with services.
  3. How you will ensure the necessary personnel, infrastructure and/or financial resources are in place to successfully support your organization’s role as mentor and commit to fully participate in the learning opportunity and all activities.
  4. Your experience integrating youth voice and perspective into your work and your commitment to do so throughout the learning opportunity.

Videos will be scored solely on content and not on production value, but video content beyond 15-minutes will not be reviewed. To submit your video, first upload it to YouTube, then include the link in your application. We encourage you to visit the application platform and read the application closely because there are a few additional elements of the application that must be completed on the platform even if you submit a video application.

I THINK I WOULD BE A BETTER FIT AS A PILOT OR YOUTH. CAN I APPLY FOR THAT INSTEAD?

Unfortunately, our pilot application period has closed. However, if you would like to receive updates on the project and future opportunities to connect, please provide your contact information.
HOW DO I SUBMIT MY APPLICATION?

You should submit your application via our application platform. Once you register and create a username and password, you can start your application and complete it at any time. You can even begin entering information and return to it later.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I SUBMIT MY APPLICATION?

On November 30, 10 finalists will be invited to participate in a 45-minute video interview (interviews to take place between December 3-14) when you can expand on the experience you describe in your application. On December 21, finalists will be notified whether they have been chosen to participate in the project.

Learning Network and Technical Assistance Questions

WHAT IS THE DURATION OF PARTICIPATION?

Participation will begin with orientation in January 2019 and will conclude with a final in-person event in September 2020.
WHO ELSE WILL BE INVOLVED IN THE LEARNING NETWORK?

Pilots: Organizations striving to implement an approach to increasing youth access and engagement in mental health supports.

Youth: Youth from each pilot community will be competitively selected to receive leadership training to infuse their voice and experience into the implementation process.

Change Coaches: Coaches experienced in quality improvement strategies and managing organizational culture change will guide pilot sites as they seek to implement a promising approach and assist mentors in their work with pilots.

Subject Matter Experts: Participants will receive exclusive access to experts within the National Council and partner networks, including Change Matrix, Watauga Consulting, Youth Move National and Relias.

Evaluator: An external evaluator will monitor the project, catalog lessons learned and identify opportunities to replicate and/or scale the proposed approaches in other communities nationwide.

WHAT KIND OF ACTIVITIES WILL MENTORS TAKE PART IN AS PART OF THE LEARNING NETWORK?

The learning network will use a combination of face-to-face learning sessions, action periods and quality improvement activities to support implementation of the proposed approaches. Mentors will work alongside the pilot site’s coach pilot organization and young people from the pilot’s community. They will also collaborate across the entire learning network with their fellow mentors, pilots and young people. There will be four in-person convenings that mentors must attend:

  1. March 2019 (Nashville, Tenn.)
  2. September 2019 (TBD)
  3. April 2020 (Austin, Texas)
  4. September 2020 (TBD)

WHAT IS THE TIME COMMITMENT ASSOCIATED WITH MENTOR PARTICIPATION IN THIS INITIATIVE?

In addition to the time and effort associated with mentoring a pilot organization, mentors will participate in the following activities:

  • Virtual orientation meeting. (January 2019, partial day)
  • Orientation visit with pilot. (February 2019, two days)
  • At least three hours per month for coaching calls, virtual meetings with other mentors, paired pilots and evaluators.
  • Effort dedicated to collecting and submitting data, tracking and reporting on milestones.
  • Four one-day in-person meetings with the entire Learning Network. (Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020)
  • Conference attendance at NatCon19 and NatCon20. (three days each)

WILL TRAVEL COSTS BE COVERED BY THE INCENTIVE PAYMENT?

No. Travel costs for mentors’ core team, up to two people, is covered separately by the National Council for the four in-person convenings.
HOW OFTEN WILL MENTORS ENGAGE WITH PILOTS OUTSIDE OF THE IN-PERSON CONVENINGS?

Beyond the four in-person convenings where mentors and pilots will have an opportunity to spend one day together (plus additional opportunities during the three official conference days at NatCon19 and NatCon20) and the in-person orientation visit, mentors and pilots will meet virtually during monthly coaching calls throughout the life of the project. Mentors and pilots may also mutually agree to connect more frequently if they choose.

 

Benefits of Participation Questions

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF PARTICIPATING?

Incentive payment. Each mentor organization will receive up to $50,000.

Tailored coaching and evaluation. Mentors will receive network-wide and site-level coaching tailored to their specific mentorship and change management needs, to enhance infrastructure and capacity to facilitate, guide and support others through change. In addition to coaching, the project’s evaluator will provide access to qualitative and quantitative data to monitor their progress and guide their work.

Incorporating youth voice. The involvement of youth in the change process is key to ensuring that the pilot’s approach is person-centered and that youth voice is woven into the fabric of their organization. By truly incorporating and leveraging youth voice, pilots and mentors will more fully connect with their communities and the populations they serve to improve outcomes.

Travel expenses to in-person meetings. All travel expenses (air/ground travel, lodging and per diem for attendees) for the four in-person meetings and a mentor/pilot in-person collaboration day will be covered by the National Council in addition to the mentor incentive.

NatCon registration and travel expenses. Participation includes free registration and travel expenses to NatCon, the nation’s premiere mental health conference, drawing up to 5,500 attendees, in 2019 and 2020. This presents not only an opportunity for mentors to participate in the robust educational programing offered at NatCon, but also to engage with peers who are working with additional pilots, each striving to implement similar change in their own organizations and communities.

HOW WILL THE INCENTIVE PAYMENT BE DISTRIBUTED?

A portion of the funds will be paid up-front to assist with costs associated with participation. The remaining incentive payments will be allocated based on attaining specific milestones that will be identified collaboratively between each mentor, the National Council and the project’s evaluator.
HOW DO I SUBMIT MY APPLICATION?

You should submit your application via our application platform. Once you register and create a username and password, you can start your application and complete it at any time. You can even begin entering information and return to it later.

 

Additional Questions

We encourage you to attend our virtual office hours on Thursday 10/25 and 11/1 from 2 to 3 p.m. ET or contact Mohini Venkatesh at MohiniV@TheNationalCouncil.org.