Increased national attention to substance use disorders among families involved in the child welfare system has led to the creation of a National Center on Substance Abuse and Child Welfare (NCSACW). The program is an initiative of the Department of Health and Human Services and jointly funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA) Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) and the Administration on Children, Youth and Families (ACYF), Children's Bureau's Office on Child Abuse and Neglect (OCAN).
The mission of the Department of Health and Human Services is to help provide the building blocks that Americans need to live healthy, successful lives. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is the United States government’s principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves. HHS is headed by the Secretary who is the chief managing officer for our family of agencies, including 11 operating divisions, 10 regional offices, as well as the Office of the Secretary.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is the Federal agency charged with improving the quality and availability of prevention, treatment, and rehabilitative services in order to reduce illness, death, disability, and cost to society resulting from substance abuse and mental illnesses.
Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT)
The Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), was created in October 1992 with a congressional mandate to expand the availability of effective treatment and recovery services for alcohol and drug problems.
CSAT supports a variety of activities aimed at fulfilling its mission:
- To improve the lives of individuals and families affected by alcohol and drug abuse by ensuring access to clinically sound, cost-effective addiction treatment that reduces the health and social costs to our communities and the nation.
- CSAT's initiatives and programs are based on research findings and the general consensus of experts in the addiction field that, for most individuals, treatment and recovery work best in a community-based, coordinated system of comprehensive services. Because no single treatment approach is effective for all persons, CSAT supports the nation's effort to provide multiple treatment modalities, evaluate treatment effectiveness, and use evaluation results to enhance treatment and recovery approaches.
The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is a division of the Department of Health & Human Services. We promote the economic and social well-being of families, children, individuals and communities.
The Administration on Children, Youth and Families (ACYF) is the primary agency within the Federal Government with the responsibility for serving children and families. The ACYF administers national programs for children and youth, provides information and other assistance to parents, works with States and local communities to develop services that support and strengthen family life, and seeks joint ventures with the private sector. The concerns of ACYF extend to all children from birth to adolescence, with a particular emphasis on children with special needs.
Established in 1912, the Children's Bureau (CB) is the oldest federal agency with legislative responsibility for children. Located within the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services' Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, the Children's Bureau is responsible for assisting States in the delivery of child welfare services - services designed to protect children and strengthen families. The agency provides grants to states, tribes and communities to operate a range of child welfare services including child protective services, family preservation and support, foster care, adoption, and independent living. In addition, the agency makes major investments in staff training, technology, and innovative programs.
Office on Child Abuse and Neglect
The Office on Child Abuse and Neglect (OCAN) was established within the Children's Bureau to provide leadership in the field of child maltreatment and in the prevention of abuse and neglect. OCAN is the principal Federal coordination point for all activities related to ensuring the safety of children at risk. While the primary responsibility for responding to cases of child maltreatment rests with State and local agencies, OCAN is the national focal point for child abuse and neglect policy. The division oversees interagency collaborative efforts, including inter- and intra-agency agreements; it also sponsors national conferences and leads special initiatives related to child abuse and neglect. OCAN supports prevention activities through the Community-Based Grants for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect and promotes improvements in the investigation and prosecution of child abuse and neglect cases through the Children's Justice Act (CJA).