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The Youth Community Supports Program (YCSP)

The Youth Community Supports Program (YCSP) is a cross-ministry intensive campus-based mental health program that serves as step-down service for youth and their families who are exiting an acute inpatient mental health setting.

The intention is to address the mental health and addictions needs of children (13-17 years) and their families who are significant users of tertiary services within Calgary and area. The program incorporates both intensive and community-based intervention, with the goal of moving children and their families between the service intensity levels while utilizing a transdisciplinary approach.

The program consists of two components:

  • Intensive, campus-based and out-of-home mental health treatment that serves 4-6 youth and their caregivers at any given time. While in program, youth attend an on-site school placement with behavioural supports run in partnership with the Calgary Board of Education.
  • Community mental health intervention for up to 15 youth and their caregivers. The community component provides mental health intervention in the family home with clinical and educational on-site support. This component supports the successful transition of youth to the community from a campus-based or acute hospital setting.


A unique feature of this program is that program staff are comprised of both Wood’s Homes and Alberta Health Services staff. Case management and decision-making are shared between the organizations to ensure comprehensive and individualized service for each youth and caregiver. The program provides added support and advocacy in manoeuvring human and health services in Calgary and area.

The top five presenting concerns for youth and families using the Youth Community Supports Program in 2015 were:

  1. Parent/ child relationship problems
  2. Suicidal ideation
  3. Self-harmful behaviour
  4. School problems
  5. Identified mental health concern



The Youth Community Supports Program provides:

  • 24-hour supervision and milieu treatment
  • 24-hour crisis support for children on-site and their families in the community
  • Individual and family therapeutic services specifically tailored to the needs of the child and family
  • Parenting/caregiver support and education
  • Group dialectical behavioural therapy
  • Access to additional therapeutic and assessment services including expressive arts therapies, speech and language therapy, etc. (at an additional cost)
  • Nursing services and monitoring of health issues
  • Access to psychiatric care, and medication management and review
  • Access to occupational therapy clinical supports
  • Access to specialized on-site educational services
  • Therapeutic Crisis Intervention (TCI)



Clients enter the program on referral from Alberta Health Services’ Child and Adolescent Addiction and Mental Health Programs (CAAMHP), and Health Link.

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