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May 31, 2019

Boston, Massachusetts-based Doc Wayne Youth Services was honored with the Children’s Behavioral Health Innovation Award for their sport-based group therapy program, Chalk Talk. The program enables youth to examine social and emotional issues through a blend of traditional outpatient therapy and sports.

Children’s Behavioral Health (CBH) Knowledge Center at the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH) gave out its second annual CBH Innovation Awards event earlier this month at the Worcester Recovery Center and Hospital (WRCH) where Doc Wayne Youth Services was selected as the 2019 awardee.

Co-funded by the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, the C.F. Adams Charitable Trust, and the Massachusetts Association for Mental Health (MAMH), the CBH Innovation Award is a one-time grant awarded to a non-profit children’s behavioral health or social service organization in recognition of its effort to:

  • Innovatively fill an unmet need or gap in the children’s behavioral health care delivery system, or
  • Respond to a “wicked” problem facing the children’s behavioral health field through creation of an innovative program or practice.

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After a competitive application process, three finalists were selected to present their innovative program at the event. The two other finalists were Riverside Community Care, for their development of Yoga-Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and The Brookline Center’s BRYT program, which partners with schools to get youth back on track after prolonged absences. Each received a prize of $5,000.

“Many human services organizations operate on tight budgets and are focused on day-to-day operations and care of children and families, so it can be challenging to take a great idea to the next level,” says CBH Knowledge Center Director Kelly English.

“The Innovation Awards are designed not only to recognize and reward creativity in the children’s mental health field, but also serves as a fun way to engage the behavioral health community in selecting which idea they believe has the most potential for impact.”

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Danna Mauch, President and CEO of the Massachusetts Association for Mental Health, notes that, “the Commonwealth’s children are in serious need of innovative solutions that will protect their mental health, promote their resiliency and support their recovery.. We are excited about Doc Wayne’s creative approach to making mental health care more accessible and non-stigmatizing for children with behavioral health challenges.”

Some descriptionDoc Wayne Youth Services won the 2016 Sport for Health Award at the Beyond Sport GLobal Awards for their program Chalk Talk. To learn more about this year’s Awards - or to begin your entry - head to The application window closes on June 7, so start your application now.


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