Goals and Vision


We envision a future in which early detection and prevention dramatically reduce the number of people who develop serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.

Our goal is to stop mental illness in its tracks, before it progresses from early warning signs to a crisis.  If young people who come to the HOPE TEAM Project are showing the very earliest warning signs of serious mental illness, we provide evidence-based care for the affected individual, and support them and their family for as long as they need help.  That care could take the form of:

  • Individual or group psychotherapy
  • Peer support
  • Working with schools to make our participants can succeed
  • Coordination with other care providers to make sure we’re all working towards the same goals.

For young people who do go on to develop a serious mental illness, we aim to create a smooth pathway to more intense treatment, and to help limit the disruption to their lives and to their families.  We help youth and family move from crisis to recovery as quickly as possible.  

HOPE TEAM History & Support


We are working to  make mental health services available to people living in and outside the City of Pittsburgh.

The HOPE TEAM Project began its work in the summer of 2017 and was previously located at the Turtle Creek Family Care Connection Center office. Currently, we are located at the UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital at the Bellefiled Towers in Oakland. We teach the community about the importance of early detection and early intervention for serious mental illness in clinics, community centers, schools, and wherever else people will listen!

Preliminarily, behind-the-scenes work for The HOPE TEAM Project began in early 2015, when Peter Bachman, Leslie Horton, and Diana Mermon, with the support of Pitt Psychiatry, began looking for an opportunity to develop clinical services for young people at high risk for developing psychosis and other serious mental illness in the Pittsburgh area. Pete, Leslie and Diana were particularly interested in finding a way to make these services available to people living in and outside the City of Pittsburgh, where risk factors for serious mental illness are common, but resources for treatment are limited.

In early 2017, The Pittsburgh Foundation provided grant funding so that the team could begin creating these services. The willingness of the Family Care Connection Centers, a service of Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC to serve as sites for HOPE TEAM to operate was the final element that made The HOPE TEAM Project a reality.

In 2018, HOPE TEAM received a grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to contiue serving the community with our work. in 2019, we were able to relocate to another center in Oakland within the Bellefield Towers Clinic affiliated with the UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital. The HOPE TEAM is very grateful for all of this support, and for the trust placed in us by the communities we hope to serve.