Resources for Families

Click here to find your Local Mental Health Authority's YES Waiver Inquiry Line for additional information about the YES Waiver

Who Is Eligible for the YES Waiver?

To participate in the YES Waiver, a child must:

  • Have a serious emotional disturbance (SED);
  • Meet the criteria to be in a psychiatric hospital;
  • Be eligible for Medicaid (parent's income does not apply) 
  • Be between the ages of 3–18 years; and
  • Live in a home setting with a legal guardian, or on their own if legally emancipated.

How do I get my child YES Waiver Services?

If you are caring for a child with a serious emotional disturbance and need help, please Find Your Local Mental Health Authority and call the YES Waiver Inquiry line to add your child to the YES Waiver Inquiry List. 

YES Waiver Overview

The Youth Empowerment Services (YES) Waiver, provides comprehensive home and community-based mental health services to youth between the ages of 3 and 18, up to a month before a youth's 19th birthday, who have a serious emotional disturbance. The YES Waiver not only provides flexible supports and specialized services to children and youth at risk of institutionalization and/or out-of-home placement due to their serious emotional disturbance, but also strives to provide hope to families by offering services aimed at keeping children and youth in their homes and communities.

The YES waiver uses a planning process known as Wraparound to create a plan specifically for your child. The Wraparound process creates a "Child and Family Team" made up of the child and the child's support group that meets at least once a month. This team may include family, friends, teachers, and professionals who want to help your child be successful. Together, the team develops a plan of care that includes YES services to meet the specific needs and goals of the child and the process builds on support that the family and community provide.

YES services are designed to identify and support the strengths of the child or youth, and the team determines what YES services are needed to help address the child's SED. YES services include (please see "YES Waiver Service Definition" document below for additional information):

  • Respite
  • Community Living Supports
  • Specialized Therapies
  • Family Supports
  • Employee Assistance and Supported Employment
  • Adaptive Aids and Supports
  • Minor Home Modifications
  • Non-Medical Transportation
  • Paraprofessional Services
  • Supportive Family-Based Alternatives
  • Transition Services

Goals of the YES Waiver

  • Reduce the amount of time the child is out of their home and community because of a mental health need
  • Extend the range of mental health services and supports available for children with this level of need
  • Prevent entry into the foster care system and relinquishment of parental custody, and
  • Improve the lives of children and youth served

YES Resources

What is the YES Waiver? Brochure (PDF)

¿Qué es la Exención YES? (PDF)

YES Waiver Introduction (video): Introduction to the YES Waiver video.

NWI Wraparound Guide for Families: Provides overview of the Wraparound process, what to expect, and how your family may benefit.


Your Texas Benefits (Medicaid Application)

Additional Links and Resources

Mental Health in Texas

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) 

Stop Bullying

Timeline of Fidelity to Wraparound and Satisfaction Review

Last updated March 13, 2018