What Is H.U.G.S.?

Supported by the Naples Children & Education Foundation, founders of the Naples Winter Wine Festival, Health Under Guided Systems (H.U.G.S.) was established to respond to the complex needs of children at risk of or with behavioral health problems in Collier County.

Offered as a no cost, community-based, children’s behavioral health program, H.U.G.S. provides bilingual universal screenings, global family centered analysis, and referrals to facilitate early identification and access to care to mitigate the effects of untreated problems later in life. H.U.G.S. reduces typical barriers that may otherwise be present in preventing a family from receiving the help they so desperately need.

Who do we serve?

H.U.G.S. serves children aged 2 months— 18 years of age in Collier County. Primarily serving low-income, at-risk youth in the community,

H.U.G.S. serves over 2,000 children every year in English, Spanish, and Creole, in our office and on-location, schools, at community partner sites, and more.

What do we offer?

H.U.G.S. offers the following services:

• Social Emotional Screenings

• Global Family Centered Analysis (GFCA)

• System Navigation

• Referrals and assistance in making appointments with community support services

• Education and Prevention

• Family Support

• Support Groups (English & Spanish)

Educational Programs

H.U.G.S. offers a variety of educational programs for both children and adults, including:

Ending the Silence —A program for parents, teachers as well as middle and high schoolers that educates individuals on the signs and symptoms of mental illnesses common in teens, to empower and encourage individuals to seek help for themselves or others, raises awareness and reduces stigma surrounding mental health conditions.

NAMI Mental Health Education –An age appropriate program for elementary school children and their caregivers, that educates them on mental illness in order to eliminate stigma surrounding mental health conditions.

Nurturing Parenting Program —This in home, or community, evidence-based Nurturing Parenting Program is designed to help HUGS families whose children exhibit mental health symptoms and challenging behaviors.  It is offered in English or Spanish.

For more information on HUGS or to request an Ending the Silence group presentation,

please contact Gayla Bowden by email at or call her at 239-260-7307.

For Spanish speakers, please call Erika at 239-260-7310.

Please fax all forms to 239-330-7163.

For our Program Participants, click here to access all required forms.


H.U.G.S. Office    5263 Golden Gate Parkway     Naples, FL 34116