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Division of Mental Health Services

Office of Children & Youth

Wraparound Process

Wraparound is a process within a system of care that individualizes services for children and youth with complicated multi-dimensional problems, often such youth are those with emotional/behavioral disturbances having multi-system needs. The term "wraparound" originated from the idea that these youth could best be served in their home and in the mainstream education classroom and their communities.


Wraparound is a philosophy of care that includes a definable planning process involving the child and the family that results in a unique set of community services and natural supports individualized for that child and family to achieve a positive set of outcomes.

The wraparound process is a way to strengthen the system of care for children and youth. Wraparound is a dynamic process with core elements. It is not a program or a service, it is not something you get, rather, it’s something you do; it is a process. These fundamental principles merge with a “never give up” philosophy that embodies an unconditional commitment to family involvement/empowerment and outcome-based interventions. The ultimate goal in wraparound is for the child to live an independent, fulfilling, and constructive life in the community. The most challenging aspect of wraparound planning is to design plans that are comprehensive yet normative and therefore effective. Team members strive to accomplish this by moving beyond conventional thinking and to use other resources to support the child and family.


The values that provide the foundation for the wraparound philosophy of care and the new paradigm for service delivery are interwoven and not mutually exclusive, but together constitute a conceptual framework. These values include:

  • Voice and choice for the family
  • Compassion for children and families
  • Integration of services and systems
  • Flexibility in approaches to working with families and in funding
  • Safety, success, and permanency in home, school, and community
  • Care that is unconditional, individualized, strength-based, family centered
  • Care that is culturally competent and community based

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