MST-CAN’s Child Welfare Program

A family-based child welfare program addressing cases of child abuse and neglect


Multisystemic Therapy for Child Abuse

and Neglect (MST-CAN)

Multisystemic Therapy for Child Abuse and Neglect (MST-CAN) is an evidence-based treatment and child welfare program for children (ages 6-17) and families that come under the guidance of Child Protective Services (CPS) due to physical abuse and/or neglect.

Historically, in the child maltreatment field, interventions have focused on only one individual—usually the child. They also tend to focus on only one of numerous risk factors. Scientific literature shows that the factors leading to physical abuse and neglect are complicated and interconnected, involving family, schools, and communities.

MST-CAN is an intensive therapy that provides a holistic approach. Lasting six to nine months, MST-CAN focuses on families, tailoring interventions to the specific risk factors that contribute to child physical abuse and neglect for each individual family.

The major goals of MST-CAN’s child welfare program:

  • keeping families together

  • assuring that children are safe

  • preventing abuse and neglect

  • reducing mental health difficulties experienced by adults and children

  • increasing natural social support

MST-CAN is Scientifically Proven to Transform the Lives of Youth and Families

95% No Reabuse Incidents 95% No Reabuse Incidents

Over 1.5 Years

86% Youth Live at- Home

Over 1.5 Years

91% Youth Report No PTSD 91% Youth Report No PTSD

Over 1.5 Years


Download our whitepaper to learn more about Multisystemic Therapy for Child Abuse and Neglect


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The Family First Act Supports MST-CAN


Title VII of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, the Family First Act (FFA), provides federal funds to states to provide services that prevent children from entering or re-entering foster care. MST-CAN’s child welfare program is scientifically proven to reduce placement. Unlike federal foster care funds, FFA funds will not be dependent on a family’s income.

The FFA will support child welfare services in three areas:

  • Mental Health

  • Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment

  • In-Home Parent Skill-Based Programs

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