Wraparound is an intensive, holistic method of engaging with individuals with complex needs (most typically children, youth, and their families) so that they can live in their homes and communities and realize their hopes and dreams.
Since the term was first coined in the 1980s, “Wraparound” has been defined in different ways. It has been described as a philosophy, an approach, and a service. In recent years, Wraparound has been most commonly conceived of as an intensive, individualized care planning and management process. Wraparound is not a treatment per se. The Wraparound process aims to achieve positive outcomes by providing a structured, creative and individualized team planning process that, compared to traditional treatment planning, results in plans that are more effective and more relevant to the child and family. Additionally, Wraparound plans are more holistic than traditional care plans in that they are designed to meet the identified needs of caregivers and siblings and to address a range of life areas. Through the team-based planning and implementation process – as well as availability of research-based interventions that can address priority needs of youth and caregivers – Wraparound also aims to develop the problem-solving skills, coping skills, and self-efficacy of the young people and family members. Finally, there is an emphasis on integrating the youth into the community and building the family’s social support network.