Featured projects

Making Connections Intervention (MCI)
The goal of The Making Connections Intervention (MCI) is to increase the likelihood that adolescents with serious psychiatric illness successfully participate in targeted mental health care. The MCI consists of one or two primer sessions intended to “front load” adolescents with the support and skills they need to begin mental health treatment. Addressing factors that influence treatment acceptability (i.e., engagement, perceived relevance, and service satisfaction) prior to treatment participation is a powerful concept that has the potential to enhance help-seeking behaviors. Thus, with support of caregivers, we intend to empower adolescents to identify perceptual and actual barriers that influence their treatment acceptability and equip them with the skills to overcome these barriers.
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Safe Mothers, Safe Children (SMSC)
This intervention seeks to reduce the risk of repeat child maltreatment through a multi-pronged intervention that enhances the identification, case management, and treatment of mothers receiving preventive services. The study intervention is adapted from Skills Training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation (STAIR), which is designed to treat post-traumatic stress dis-order (PTSD) and Parent-Child Interaction Therapy […]
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Family and Food Matters Family Program (FFM)
Family and Food to Pregnant Women aims to create awareness of the unique effect of food insecurity on pregnant women and their developing child; promote overall access to and intake of appropriately nutrient-dense
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Family Groups for Urban Youth (MFG)

McSilver Institute is conducting the MFG study across New York State’s licensed child behavioral health clinic system to examine the short- and long-term impact of Multiple Family Groups (MFG) on urban youth with Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct Disorder.

The study also examines family-level mediators of child outcomes, as well as clinic and provider level moderators of MFG implementation and integration.

Funder: National Institute of Mental Health
Principal Investigator: Mary M. McKay, PhD
Co-Investigator: Mary Acri, PhD

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Making Connections Intervention (MCI)

A pilot randomized controlled clinical trial is studying the effectiveness of the MCI intervention in 60 Black adolescents who have depression symptoms and attend grades 6-12 within New York City Department of Education Public Schools.

The intervention has been devised to address barriers to mental health treatment engagement, in youth, as well as their caregivers.

Funder: National Institute of Mental Health
Principal Investigator: Michael A. Lindsey, PhD

The MCI is a 1-2 session, evidence-based intervention designed to improve engagement, perceived relevance, and treatment satisfaction among depressed, Black adolescents. The program also uses tailored outreach strategies including innovative digital content such as a caregiver web page and the MCI Headway app.

The MCI is paired with Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Adolescents (IPT-A). IPT-A is a 12-15 session intervention that teaches communication and problem-solving strategies for interpersonal problems associated with adolescent depression. We previously performed a small pilot study that used the MCI as an add-on to the IPT-A. The results suggested that MCI has a positive impact on many aspects of change associated with treatment engagement and in the reduction of depression symptoms. We also noted grade improvement and reduced suspensions among the youth who completed the program.

This randomized control trial is currently recruiting Black adolescents in grades 6-12 who attend New York City (NYC) Department of Education (DOE) Public Schools and The Harlem Children’s Zone (HCZ).

Program factsheet (PDF)

Updates about the Making Connections Intervention

McSilver Receives NIMH Grant to Study Engagement by Black Adolescents in Depression Treatment

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