Miami Beach Behavioral Health Program Expands Student Reach

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—   Following $50,000 Grant Awarded to the Miami Beach Chamber Education Foundation —

Since 2016, the City of Miami Beach has worked collaboratively with The Children’s Trust, Miami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS), Miami Beach Chamber Education Foundation and Borinquen Health Care Center to provide comprehensive on-site services such as social-emotional screenings, behavioral assessments, crisis interventions and counseling to Miami Beach Senior High School, Nautilus Middle School, Feinberg Fisher K-8 Center, South Pointe Elementary, North Beach Elementary, Biscayne Elementary, Treasure Island Elementary and Ruth K. Broad K-8 Bay Harbor K-8 Center.


“I’m proud of the substantial level of health care services that we have been able to provide to the students of Miami Beach through the collective efforts of the Miami Beach Chamber Education Foundation and all our partners,” shared Jerry Libbin, President and CEO of the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce, appreciatively.


By virtue of the program’s inspiring impact, the State Attorney’s Safer and Healthier Community Fund, through The Miami Foundation, has awarded the school-based initiative $50,000 to expand its services.


In an effort to create more opportunities for middle and high school students to receive the help they need to succeed, funds will be used to hire a full-time licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) – continuing to make the city the only municipality providing full-time mental health support in public schools throughout Miami-Dade County.


“This grant will allow us to further improve the quality of our services and build a healthy, positive environment in our schools for years to come,” expressed Commissioner Micky Steinberg. “By continuing to address mental health issues early on, specifically in relation to substance abuse, these long-term goals will become fast-approaching solutions.”



Too often, the biggest obstacle relating to substance abuse involves unattended mental health issues. With grant assistance, the school-based initiative will target behavioral health from this necessary perspective and introduce additional expert help. Nurses, social workers and city staff will work collaboratively to identify high-risk behaviors that lead to substance abuse and impaired driving by providing early assessments and promoting awareness among students, parents and teachers.


“Since the beginning, Miami Beach has aggressively pursued additional funding to enhance the school-based health clinics we fund,” shared President & CEO of The Children’s Trust James R. Haj. “This grant is a game changer not only for the success of the program, but for the betterment of all children in the South Florida community – as it reinforces the city’s mental health program as a shining example of what can be duplicated elsewhere.”


Boosting resources and extending student reach, the mental health service program expansion is focused on continually investing in the youth – securing the future of Miami Beach by ensuring a child’s right to learn without obstacles.

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