CASA’s Core program provides goal-oriented, voluntary community-based mental health services for children and adolescents experiencing mental illness. The program provides a variety of service streams to provide you and your family access to appropriate and high-quality mental health care.

Core’s goal is to promote healing, and to preserve and restore the mental health of children and youth by:

  • Providing an opportunity to understand, repair or re-experience problematic mental health experiences in new and healthy ways;

  • Treating each child, youth and family according to their unique needs and assisting each to attain their potential functioning within their community;

  • Helping children, youth and families to recognize, appreciate and use their strengths to achieve their goals.


Core’s team includes psychiatrists, social workers, psychologists, occupational therapists and nurses. Together, these registered professionals utilize a blend of therapeutic modalities to facilitate the healing and growth of patients and their families.

Who is it for?
Core addresses a wide range of mental health concerns, including social and emotional difficulties, behavioural challenges, anxiety, depression and/or relational challenges. Core is for children and youth ages three to 17 whose families live in the Edmonton area.


What happens in the service?

Core aims to deliver the highest quality of mental health care within CASA’s stepped care model that:

  • Provides timely and flexible access to mental health care;

  • Matches the child/adolescent and their family with the appropriate level of clinical service, while acknowledging that clients may need to step up or step down in levels of care;

  • Provides a range of service streams that address common problems and provide multiple pathways of care using the least intensive levels of services first;

  • Delivers mental health care programming that is efficient, sustainable and accountable;

  • Redirects referrals when appropriate to other specialized CASA programs in order to ensure families are matched with the right service at the right time;

  • Actively includes the child’s family, school and community network in treatment.


What are step-down/step-up services?

During a patient’s treatment at CASA, the care team may determine, in conjunction with the family, that a different level of service is required. Other programs such as CASA House, a day program, family or trauma services may be accessed if a more intensive program is required. Step-down services may be appropriate when a family has completed their episode of care and less intensive supports are required. The staff in our program may then work to connect the patient and family to community programs to build their natural support network.


How do I refer?

For children aged five to 17, referrals can be made by a health professional or by the family through centralized intake at Alberta Health Services (call 825-402-6799).


For children aged three and four, parents are able to self-refer via the form below.