Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

The Montrose Center: Hatch Youth

The Montrose Center’s Hatch Youth program is a prevention program “disguised” as a social program, empowering lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth ages 13 to 20 by providing:

  • A dedicated safe and affirming space for social interaction and group activities
  • Opportunities for social connection and engagement with peers three times per week
  • Access to adult role models who also serve as volunteer facilitators
  • Consciousness-raising educational presentations and group exercises
  • Tutoring and academic advisement
  • Self-esteem building
  • Screening support and referrals for depression, substance abuse, and suicide risk
  • Screening for the need for family reunification and conflict mediation support and referral to appropriate resources

At least once per month, Hatch youth are provided an opportunity to attend educational sessions pertaining to their physical health (e.g., HIV/STI prevention; alcohol, tobacco and other drug use and abuse; relationship and dating safety; pregnancy; etc.). Four meetings each year are led by licensed mental health professionals on addiction, progression of substance use patterns, and recovery options. Suicide prevention and mental health are each covered at least three times per year. During social activities, Hatch Youth staff and volunteer facilitators screen individual participants for substance abuse, depression and anxiety, and suicide risk.

Regular weekly meetings occur in a dedicated space  within the center that is well-furnished for activities and features all-in-one desktop computer systems, games, entertainment equipment, art supplies, books,  and educational materials. Special projects, such as a monthly radio show, Pride parade entries, and an “alternative” LGBTQ-friendly prom, are voluntary and occur both on- and off-site.

With funding from SAMHSA’s FY2014 Subcontracts to Build Evaluation Capacity for Evidence-Based Interventions, the Montrose Center will enhance the evaluation of the Hatch Youth program to establish the model as an evidence-based practice suitable for replication in other communities by validating outcome measures, demonstrating effectiveness, and identifying opportunities for improvement or further development. Specific activities will include:

  • Reviewing and strengthening the evaluation tool
  • Reviewing and strengthening data collection criteria
  • Establishing data collection and analysis procedures
  • Gathering qualitative factors
  • Publishing findings


Mike Ator
Community Projects Specialist
Montrose Counseling Center, Inc. d/b/a the Montrose Center
401 Branard Street, 2nd Floor
Houston, TX 77006
Phone: (713) 800-0811

Ann Robison, PhD
Executive Director
Montrose Counseling Center, Inc. d/b/a the Montrose Center
401 Branard Street, 2nd Floor
Houston, TX 77006
Phone: (713) 529-0037 ext. 305