Regional Partnerships have been developed based on the geographic regions as designated by the California Mental Health Directors Association. As discussed previously, CMHDA uses five geographic regions of California for planning purposes. For Regional Partnership purposes, county mental health directors in some regions decided to form sub-regions.
These sub-regions were developed to reflect the following planning factors:
Geography, distance, and travel between counties.
Number and location of educational institutions.
Population density of counties.
Existing collaborative efforts among counties, between counties and educational institutions, and with other health or educational organizations.
Once the application has been completed for DMH, here are some suggestions to assist with planning. Included here are questions taken from the Regional Partnership County Interview Guide on the DMH WET webpage to help think through next the steps, including who needs to be included in our planning. By interviewing county staff and others you will also get a sense of county culture and potential sources of conflict within the region. This will be helpful as regional projects are developed.
One of the MHSA Essential Elements is Community Collaboration. Collaboration is critical to the success and outcome of Regional Partnerships. As the Regional Partnership develops it is recommended to form some type of leadership structure or Steering Committee that helps support the work in the community. There is no requirement in the guidelines to do so, however, based on the experiences of the Collaborative, this may be a useful way for the Regional Partnership to add to the county mental health perspective to include other partners: education, consumers, family members, etc