Press Release: 2019-05-15

Doc Wayne Youth Services Wins the 2019 Children’s Behavioral Health Innovation Awards

WORCESTER — The Children’s Behavioral Health (CBH) Knowledge Center at the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH) held its second annual CBH Innovation Awards event Friday, May 10, 2019 at the Worcester Recovery Center and Hospital (WRCH) where Doc Wayne Youth Services was selected as the 2019 awardee.

“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.”

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. 

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. This year’s finalists were selected both for their innovation and also because they have the potential to be replicated or expanded to benefit children with behavioral health needs and their families across the Commonwealth. 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.”

After a competitive application process, three finalists were selected to present their innovative program at the event. The more than 150 people who attended then used a real time text- voting feature to select the winner of the $10,000 prize. Doc Wayne Youth Services won for its Chalk Talk program, which blends traditional outpatient therapy and sports. 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.


About The Children’s Behavioral Health (CBH) Knowledge Center:

The Children's Behavioral Health Knowledge Center was established in Chapter 321 of the Acts of 2008: An Act Relative to Children's Mental Health, with a mission to ensure that: the workforce of clinicians and direct care staff providing children's behavioral health services are highly skilled and well trained; the services provided to children in the Commonwealth are cost-effective and evidence-based; and the Commonwealth continues to develop and evaluate new models of service delivery. CBH is located at the MA Department of Mental Health (DMH) in the Child, Youth, and Family Division.  As part of the state’s mental health authority, the Knowledge Center's purview is the entire children’s behavioral health system, across MA Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) HH agencies and across public and private payers. To learn more visit: