DMH Young Adult Resource Guide Health, Wellness, and Nutrition

Department of Mental Health Young Adult Resource Guide - Health, Wellness, and Nutrition

Table of Contents

Health Insurance

To find a health insurance plan for you, visit the Health Connector website:

For more information about health coverage, insurance, and how to apply, call the Health Care for All Help Line at 1-800-272-4232 or visit their website:

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) vs. Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)

  • Social Security pays benefits to people who cannot work because they have a medical condition that is expected to last at least one year or result in death.
  • For more information about SSDI, visit the following link:


Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

  • SSI makes monthly payments to people who have low income and few resources and are age 65 or older, blind, or have a disability.
  • For more information about SSI, visit the following link:
  • For more information, you can call Social Security’s toll-free number: 1-800-772-1213 or call one of the following Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA) Programs in Massachusetts
  • BenePLAN: Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden, Hampshire, Middlesex, and Worcester counties: 1-877-937-9675
  • Project Impact: Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Nantucket, Plymouth, Suffolk, Essex, and Norfolk counties: 1-800-734-7475
  • To find a Social Security office near you, visit the following link, type your zip code in the space provided, and click Locate:

For more information on SSI and SSDI, visit the following helpful link:


  • Please visit the above website to find out information about medications. You can click on any of the links located under the “General Information about Medications” section, or you can scroll down to the “Specific Medications” section to find out more about certain medications and questions and answers about that medication.

Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative (CBHI)

  • CBHI is an interagency initiative of the Commonwealth’s Executive Office of Health and Human Services whose mission is to strengthen, expand and integrate Massachusetts state services into a comprehensive, community- based system of care, to ensure that families and their children with significant behavioral, emotional and mental health needs obtain the services necessary for success in home, school and community.
  • Youth covered by the new Mass Health services include ages 0-21.
  • For more information about CBHI, visit Once there, click the dropdown menu at the top of the page and select “Government”, then click on the “Special Commissions and Initiatives” section, and select the “Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative” link.

Health Centers

  • To find a health center near you, visit the above link. Type your address into the appropriate space, select a distance away from your address using the dropdown arrow, select your type of service, and then hit Go.
  • To find out more information about the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers, visit their main website:


  • To find a clinic near you, enter your zip code in the space provided, and then click Search.

Healthy Changes Initiative

  • The Massachusetts Department of Mental Health recognizes the essential role of wellness in recovery from psychiatric illness. The mission of the DMH Healthy Changes Initiative is to improve the quality of life, health and wellness of individuals at risk for illness and premature death and eliminate the significant health disparity among individuals with serious mental illness.

SNAP: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP is the new name for the Food Stamp Program. SNAP benefits are provided by the federal government and administered by DTA. Residents of the Commonwealth who participate in SNAP are families with children, elders and disabled. Many are the working poor with limited income or those who are temporarily unemployed.
  • To apply for SNAP benefits, you may fill out the SNAP application to see if you are eligible to receive benefits. To apply online, please visit the above link and click on the “SNAP Application” link located under the “Apply Online” section. To apply by mail or in person, you must complete the application and submit it to the Transitional Assistance office that covers your city/town. To download and print the SNAP Application, visit the above link and look under the “Apply by Mail or Fax” section. To find the Transitional Assistance office that covers your city/town, visit the above link and click on the “Transitional Assistance Office” link located under both the “Apply by Mail or Fax” and “Apply in Person” sections.

WIC: Women, Infants and Children Nutrition Program

  • WIC is a nutrition program that provides nutrition and health education, healthy food and other services free of charge to Massachusetts families who qualify. WIC’s goal is to help keep pregnant and breastfeeding women, new moms, and kids under age 5 healthy. WIC also offers immunization screening and referral, breastfeeding support, and nutrition and health workshops on a variety of topics including meal planning, maintaining a healthy weight, picky eaters, caring for a new baby, and shopping on a budget.
  • To apply for WIC, call 1-800-WIC-1007, or visit the above website, click on the map, and select your area to find a WIC program in your community.

Mass in Motion

  • Mass in Motion aims to promote wellness and to prevent overweight and obesity in Massachusetts – with a particular focus on the importance of healthy eating and physical activity. The website provides information on physical activity, eating healthy, staying healthy at home, at work, and in your community, as well as a blog.

Physical Activity


  • Many YMCA’s offer fitness facilities, recreational activities, educational programs to promote healthier decisions, and a wide variety of programs that support physical, intellectual, and spiritual strength. Membership rates among YMCA’s vary, but ask your Y if they offer reduced rates for students.
  • To find a YMCA nearest you, visit and type in your city, state, or zip code into the “Find your Y” search bar.

Local Gyms

  • Many local gyms offer low monthly rates and special offers. Contact a gym near you to find out what fitness facilities they offer, their membership rates, and if they offer reduced rates for students.

Food Pantries and Free Meal Programs

  • Food pantries are places where people in need can receive free food (mostly canned and packaged foods) to take home with them to prepare. Free meal programs, such as soup kitchens, are places where people can go to eat cooked meals free of charge.
  • To find a food pantry or free meal program, call Project Bread’s FoodSource Hotline:

FoodSource Hotline: 1 (800) 645-8333

Sexual Education

For information regarding sexually transmitted diseases, pregnancy, birth control and other general information please visit, click in the “Resource Guides” tab and click the link for the sexual education manual.