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Planning for & Implementing System Change Using Wraparound

“Wraparound is increasingly being recognized as both a systems-level and child- and family-level intervention. When implemented effectively, wraparound facilitates changes in a community’s mental health, substance abuse, child welfare and juvenile justice systems that reduce barriers to engagement, increase youth and family participation, and achieve positive child and family outcomes.

However, system change is tough to do. First, systems have a strong tendency to keep operating them the way they always have. Second, because systems are complex collections of many parts that interact in a variety of ways, attempting to change what’s happening in one area of the system can have unforeseen consequences in other places. Third, since it takes as much effort to change a system as it does to operate it, keeping a system running while you are changing it requires twice as much work.”