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Reflecting its leadership as the state’s most comprehensive behavioral healthcare agency, CHR was recently awarded a $2 million grant from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to enhance and expand a variety of services for people of all ages.

CHR participated in a national competition for the funding which is part of SAMHSA’s far-reaching “Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC)” initiative designed to strengthen the reach and services offered at community-based behavioral healthcare agencies like CHR. As part of the funding, CHR will become a CCBHC within the first four months of the grant and the first CCBHC in Connecticut!

CHR’s program is known as CT First and it will:

  • Expand 24/7 access to mobile crisis programs for children and adults by hiring overnight staff and continuing to work closely with local police departments.
  • Introduce primary care and screenings to CHR’s Enfield office and maintain wellness programming in Manchester and Bloomfield, all with a goal of providing truly integrated care and measuring success with the help of new clinical staff and IT infrastructure updates.
  • Implement smoking cessation programming for clients.
  • Expand open-access services for people with substance use disorders/opioid use disorders.
  • Increase the use of recovery coaches to help facilitate rapid implementation of treatment.
  • Launch a more formal agreement and liaison with the Veterans Administration and veteran groups in our region.

“The impact of this funding is profound. It will allow us to fulfill strategic goals such as smoking cessation and integrated care and also to invest in a more robust IT infrastructure so we can seamlessly track outcomes system-wide,” said CHR’s President and CEO, Heather Gates. “CT First is a game-changer for Connecticut.”

Click here to learn more about CHR.

CHR is a comprehensive, non-profit behavioral healthcare agency that offers a broad array of services for adults, children and families whose lives have been touched by mental illness, substance use, trauma and more. CHR has offices throughout eastern and central Connecticut and was named a Top Workplace for the last four years in a row. Learn more at

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