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KVC Health Systems Selected for International Brain Science Initiative

KVC Health Systems, which includes the new KVC Institute for Health Systems Innovation and its premier psychiatric treatment subsidiary KVC Hospitals, is one of 15 U.S. and Canadian nonprofit organizations selected to participate in “Change in Mind: Applying Neurosciences to Revitalize Communities.”

Change in Mind is a new initiative of the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities, in partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the Norlien Foundation. The organizations will work together to raise awareness of the latest neuroscience on how life-altering toxic stress affects the health and wellbeing of children and families. Furthermore, they will lead efforts to align systems and public policy with the latest science with the goal of moving the needle on difficult social issues like poverty, substance abuse, family discord, trauma, and physical and mental health challenges.

KVC Health Systems, based in the Kansas City area, is an international leader known for its track record of innovation in child welfare and behavioral healthcare. The nonprofit organization improves outcomes for thousands of children in foster care across Kansas, Nebraska, Kentucky and West Virginia, and also provides in-home therapy to keep families safely together and prevent the need for out-of-home care (often called family preservation). KVC is nationally recognized for its leadership in integrating trauma-informed care into child welfare and related systems.



Sue Lohrbach, Executive Director of the KVC Institute for Health Systems Innovation


Through the participation of its representatives Suzanne Lohrbach, Executive Director of the KVC Institute for Health Systems Innovation ( and James Roberson, Vice President of KVC’s psychiatric hospitals (, KVC will contribute knowledge gained from its 45 years of direct practice in behavioral health, mental health and child welfare to the Change in Mind initiative.

“The participation of KVC Health Systems in this exciting initiative shows that there is no more uniquely qualified sector than the nonprofit to lead larger systems change, by aligning policy, regulatory, and fiscal areas into alignment with the brain science,” said Susan Dreyfus, president and CEO of the Alliance.



“We’re thankful to the Alliance, RWJF and the Norlien Foundation for launching the Change in Mind Initiative,” said B. Wayne Sims, Chief Executive Officer of KVC Health Systems. “This is a significant movement that affirms two truths that are important to us at KVC: one, we must infuse the latest neuroscience into human services work because it is the key to change and healing, and two, the nonprofit sector has a critical role to play in aligning systems and policies to what we know about the human brain.”

An earlier and ongoing neuroscience initiative of KVC Health Systems involved a partnership with Dr. Glenn Saxe, Director of the Child Study Center at New York University’s Langone Medical Center and founder of Trauma Systems Therapy (TST). KVC collaborated with Dr. Saxe on the adaptation and implementation of TST throughout its continuum of care in child welfare, and later created the NYU/KVC Midwest Trauma Training Center which educates professionals about effective trauma treatment and services for children, adolescents and families. The NYU/KVC Midwest Trauma Training Center is connected to the National Child Traumatic Stress Network through a grant funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Learn more at

Media Contact:
Jenny Kutz, Director of Communications
KVC Health Systems
(913) 322-4994 or

About KVC Health Systems, Inc.
KVC Health Systems, headquartered in the greater Kansas City area, is a private, nonprofit 501(c)3 organization that enriches and enhances the lives of over 50,000 children and families each year by providing medical and behavioral healthcare, social services, and education. KVC’s diverse continuum of services includes foster care, adoption, in-home family therapy, behavioral healthcare, and children’s psychiatric hospitals. In its 45-year history, KVC has grown since from a single Kansas home for boys to a national organization serving tens of thousands of children in five states. Learn more at

About the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities:
The Alliance for Strong Families and Communities is a national organization dedicated to achieving a vision of a healthy society and strong communities for all children, adults, and families. The Alliance works for transformational change by representing and supporting its network of hundreds of nonprofit human serving organizations across North America as they translate knowledge into best practices that improve their communities. Working with and through its member network on leadership and advocacy, the Alliance strives to achieve high impact by reducing the number of people living in poverty, increasing the number of people with opportunities to live healthy lives, and increasing the number of people with access to educational and employment success. Learn more at  

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