Children come first​

The purpose of the child welfare system in North Carolina is to provide a safe and supportive environment for a child in need—with a goal of returning them to their home or permanent setting when it is safe to do so. Our goal is to partner with local Departments of Social Services (DSS) to provide access and coverage for services and supports to help children and families live together in their communities.

In order to build a system that is truly focused on healthy children, families, and communities we want the voice of families and communities to be at the center of all of our work. Working with an advisory council as well as partnering with youth, families, and stakeholders, we are developing a Child Program that is the first of its kind in the state of North Carolina. The children are the heart of this program, and each is unique in their needs, lived experience and support system. To help children receive what they need to become stable and thriving members of their communities, we commit to care plans that account for specialized needs, and an available network of providers and resources to help children.

What services and supports exist for children?

If a child is eligible for Medicaid, they have coverage for different behavioral health and community-based services. What’s right for them depends on their unique situation and needs.

When a family’s case is opened with DSS, we partner to help inform the care plan. This plan outlines the need of the child and family and could include therapy services, life skills training, and other resources that help the child and family grow and learn together.

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More resources

The system of care for children is made up of many people and organizations. Every person in a child’s life can greatly influence and impact their life, wellbeing, and safety. Our goal is to connect you with the resources and information you need along the way.

For families and guardians

For state and local agencies

If you have questions about services or need help finding a provider, call our 24/7 Access and Crisis line at 1-800-939-5911. If you or a family member is having a mental health crisis, dial **ASK (2-7-5) from your cell phone to speak with someone about crisis services.


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