Presbyterian Children's Homes And Services Of Missouri : The Pchas Case Study

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Presbyterian Children’s Homes and Services of Missouri (PCHAS) plans to continue providing Therapeutic Mentoring services to youth between the ages of four and nineteen in Lincoln County. This program will work with youth identified through school districts (Lincoln County R III) and other social service and healthcare focused agencies (Crider Health Center, Preferred Family Healthcare) in Lincoln County.

The expected risk factors to be present in this population include:

mental health/behavioral issues of youth that increase caregiver burden
• social isolation
• poverty
• high unemployment rates
• poor social connections
• parental history of mental illness including depression
• parental lack of understanding of children’s needs
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Coupled with this population growth, was a large growth in poverty. The report illustrates that the poverty rate in the county significantly outgrew the population over the last ten years. The poverty rate increased by 19.3% from 2008-2012, and represents 6,488 Lincoln County residents, including 2,425 children under the age of 18. This imbalance of population and poverty growth increases the need for affordable and accessible services within the county.

The Lincoln County Needs Assessment quoted a recently released national research report that indicated mentoring is one of the keys to academic achievement and keeping students in school and on track. This new research reinforced the growing body of evidence that mentoring is also a critical asset in helping America’s disconnected young people to persevere and find pathways to meaningful and productive lives. (America’s Promise Alliance, Civic Enterprises and Peter D. Hart Research Associates, 2012). In the Executive Director’s View section (#3) of the 2014 Lincoln County Needs Assessment, when asked the question “Is there another provider or program you can think of that would enhance the effectiveness of our local system of the care?”, the reply was “Expanding the therapeutic mentoring program based on its effectiveness in reaching kids with varying degrees of mental health needs and the ability for mentors to get

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