Parents or Caregivers with Psychiatric Conditions

Parents or caregivers with psychiatric conditions often have special needs. MHADC’s EMERGE staff members provide advocacy, home visits, and a range of courses designed to help participants set goals, improve parenting skills, and develop strategies that prepare families for disruptions arising from a parent’s illness. We also teach participants to advocate for themselves and their families.

For additional information, contact us via email or call 845-473-2500, ext. 1301.


Parents or caregivers of children with psychiatric conditions need a break. Managing a family and household can be trying under the best conditions. If you have a child with a mental illness it’s even tougher. MHADC’s Respite programs support families with children ages 4 to 18 who are in counseling for serious emotional disorders (SED). Children are carefully paired with trained staff members who meet them weekly or biweekly for one-on-one fun and enrichment.

There are also monthly group activities and excursions providing parents or other caregivers with a break. Respite also helps families with SED children get scholarships for summer camp programs. Please note: there is a waiting list for Respite, but openings occur regularly because participation is limited to one year. For details or for information about joining the waiting list, e-mail Julie Simpson or phone 845-473-2500, ext. 1324.


HOPE for Families is a peer support network for parents and caregivers of children with serious emotional disorders (SED). HOPE is designed to decrease isolation and help parents and caregivers develop support systems. There are special groups for parents of incarcerated youth.  HOPE meets regularly in Beacon and Poughkeepsie. For dates and locations visit our calendar and search for HOPE. For more information, e-mail Lynn Rogers or phone 845-473-2500, ext. 1343.

Workshops and Classes

For general information for adults with mental illness and their families please e-mail Marjorie Tortorella or phone her at 845-473-2500, ext. 1316. We also offer a wide-range of workshops and classes. Check our calendar for upcoming dates.

For information on the following parenting classes, please contact Marlene Taylor or phone her at 845-473-2500, ext. 1309. 

  • How To Talk So Kids Will Listen
  • How To Talk So Teens Will Listen
  • Managing Defiant Behavior
  • Parenting Challenging Teens
  • Parenting the Explosive Child
  • Parent Well Being
  • Parent Education and Custody Effectiveness (PEACE) consists of two, three-hour sessions. There is a $75 fee, but scholarships are available. PEACE classes are held monthly.