Transitional Age Youth (TAY) System of Care
Louise Hill, LCSW
Santa Clara County Mental Health Department
Family and Children’s Services Division (F&C)
Phone: 1 (408)885-3219 (Information regarding TAY system of care)
Phone: 1 (800) 704-0900 (Mental Health Call Center for referrals to service providers)
Transitional Age Youth (TAY) is youth between the ages of 16-25 who are launching from adolescence into young adulthood. This distinct population is called upon to make complex decisions about their lives in regards to personal relationships, employment, health care, housing, education and finances. Young adults have extraordinary needs and are often faced with challenges and changes which they are often unprepared for. The intent of the Mental Health TAY System of Care is to provide resources and strategies to assist this population in being able to successfully transition into the adult world.
One of the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) TAY initiatives was the development of TAY peer mentors that utilize a peer-to-peer approach in working with consumers of the mental health system. The role of the mentors is to assist TAY consumers in building independence, increasing self-awareness, providing support, locating resources and facilitating community involvement. TAY mentors also participate in the community planning process, conduct outreach, and represent the voices of TAY consumers in system meetings.
Mission of the Peer Mentor
A TAY peer mentor is an advocate that empowers young adults to share their voices and is an active participant in the transformation of the traditional mental health system. Our innovative role allows us to be introduced to a work environment that can harvest working skills and prepares us as well as others to reach forms of independence. This opportunity enables us to not have to rely on disability benefits, but to gain the responsibility of self reliance. Once a path of advancement is achieved we can reach independence on mental, physical, and financial levels for both ourselves and those we serve through our efforts.