Family Needs & Strengths (FANS)

The Family Needs & Strengths (FANS) assessment and outcome tool for Family Peer Support.  The FANS was derived from the Child Needs & Strengths (CANS), developed by Dr. John Lyons.  Seeing the need for a Family Peer Support Services assessment and outcome tool was developed in partnership with New York State Western Region Family Peer Support Services Program Directors, Dr. Lyons, and strongly encouraged and endorsed by New York State Office of Mental Health.

Family Peer Advocates engage with parent/caregivers as partners in a journey towards empowerment by identifying areas where the parent/caregiver has skills and strengths and yet continues to have some needs and understanding for support, information, and knowledge with and about services in the child serving systems.  FANS creates an opportunity for parent/caregiver to develop focused priorities and goals for themselves that will in turn support their child or youth to be successful in their home, school and community.

FANS identifies strengths and needs in the following areas; self-care, knowledge and skill development, self-efficacy, engagement, and parent voice, service access, and ownership of success by creating a shared working partnership with the Family Peer Advocate.

The Office of Mental health supports the use and reporting of FANS data to the CAIRS system to ensure FANS is used to inform the child service systems to ensure the systems remain responsive to meet the current needs of families.

Upcoming FANS Trainings

FANS Basic (full two days) is an initial training for a Family Peer Advocate to complete before using in their work with families.

Re-certification (full 1 day) occurs yearly.  Your FANS Certificate lists your expiration date.  It is up to individual advocates to complete a re-certification training prior to expiration.  You may attend any location and date that works best with your schedule.  If you fail to re-certify you cannot use the FANS tool.




March 19-20, 2020
9:00 AM-4:30 PM both days

OMH Field Office
545 Cedar Street, Room 204
Syracuse, NY 13210
Lunch on your own

Registration and Questions? Contact the Central Regional Parent Advisor:
Susan Lewis
Phone: 315-426-3936



February 26-27, 2020
9:00 AM-4:00 PM both days

*Re-certification (for FPA-Cs in good standing ONLY)

February 27, 2020
9:00 AM-12:00 PM

Hillside Children’s Center
50 Batavia City Center
Batavia, NY 14020
Lunch on your own

Registration and Questions? 
Carrie St. Clair
Phone: 716-220-6850

NYC Region FANS    Coming soon! 

Hudson River Region FANS    Coming soon!

For general information about FANS contact:

Nancy Craig
Phone: 716-432-6238

For training needs please contact your Regional Parent Advisors.

For information about or how to access New York State Office of Mental Health CAIRS reporting system Contact:

Heather Lane
Phone: 315- 426-3940