Our Coalition

The Maryland Coalition of Families (MCF) is the statewide family voice for families of children and adolescents with mental health, substance use and/or other behavioral health needs. We advocate for improving services in all systems of care for children, youth and families. We provide:

  • Information and resources
  • One-to-one family support
  • Trainings
  • Support groups
  • Policy advocacy

Incorporated in 1999 as a private, nonprofit organization, MCF is Maryland’s statewide family network organization, a designation from the federal Substance Use and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). MCF changed its name from "Maryland Coalition of Families for Children’s Mental Health" to the "Maryland Coalition of Families" in 2016. MCF is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors comprised of at least 51% adult caregivers of a child or adolescent with a diagnosable emotional or behavioral disability. All of our family support staff are parents who have cared for a child with behavioral health needs and have been trained to help other families.

We Believe

  • Children and youth with behavioral health needs are valued and require individualized services to achieve their full potential.
  • Families are a constant in a child’s life and are equal partners in planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of services.
  • Services for children, youth and their families are provided from a strength-based approach and are responsive to the needs of the whole child and entire family.
  • Local and state systems of care are family-driven and culturally and linguistically competent.

Our Values

  • Respect for the dignity and individual differences of each family and the rights of families to make decisions for their children
  • Partnership with providers, policymakers, administrators and other advocacy organizations to improve systems of care for children and youth
  • Responsibility to assist families with understandable, complete and accurate information
  • Commitment to empower families through support, training and education
  • Accountability to families, the community, and to funders for the performance of quality of services and supports provided by the Coalition
  • Cultural and linguistic competence in the delivery of programs and services