Depression in Children Concept. African american mother comforting her upset little daughter at psychologist consultation

Aunt Martha’s launches collaboration with Lutheran Social Services of Illinois in Chicago’s Portage Park Neighborhood

Press Release

Partnership will offer one-stop access to primary care, mental health and behavioral health services.

CHICAGO, IL:  Aunt Martha’s Health & Wellness, one of Illinois’ largest Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC), and Lutheran Social Services of Illinois (LSSI), one of the largest statewide providers of social services, are collaborating to increase community access to primary care and behavioral health services in Chicago’s Portage Park and Belmont-Cragin neighborhoods.

Logo included in press release announcing collabroation with Lutheran Social Services of Illinois

The partnership will bring Aunt Martha’s services to LSSI’s Portage Cragin Counseling Center, located at 4840 W. Byron Street, Chicago.

Teams of employees from both agencies will work hand-in-hand with patients and their caregivers to develop care plans, coordinate visits and monitor progress toward personal treatment goals.

“This partnership is about bringing value to the community. That’s central to everything we do and in LSSI we found a partner that shares that commitment,” said Raul Garza, Aunt Martha’s President and CEO.

From the patient’s perspective, according to Garza, Aunt Martha’s on-site primary care, nursing and psychiatric services will be seamlessly integrated with the outpatient counseling and therapy services already being provided at LSSI’s Portage Cragin center. The integrated model is the underpinning of Aunt Martha’s value-based approach to care and has been demonstrated to result in higher levels of screening, better adherence to treatment, fewer ER visits and fewer hospital admissions – all factors that contribute to better outcomes and lower costs.

“Health and human service providers have a responsibility to improve the health and well-being of their community,” said Mark A. Stutrud, President and CEO of Lutheran Social Services of Illinois. “This integrated approach provides Whole Person, Whole Family care.”

Aunt Martha’s and LSSI are planning an opening event for the summer of 2021.

About Aunt Martha’s

Aunt Martha’s serves nearly 120,000 children and adults each year with more than 35 sites, including 23 community health centers spread across nine counties. The agency’s integrated health home model offers value-based, coordinated services, delivering whole-person wellness through the integration of primary and behavioral health care and linkages to additional support services that address social determinants of health. Aunt Martha’s has been continuously accredited by The Joint Commission since 1997.

About Lutheran Social Services of Illinois (LSSI)

Serving Illinois since 1867, Lutheran Social Services of Illinois ( is a nonprofit social service organization of the three Illinois synods of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). LSSI is one of the largest statewide social service providers. The organization provides critical programs for Illinois residents including foster care, mental health services, alcohol and drug treatment, affordable senior housing, residential programs for people with developmental disabilities, and services that help families who have been impacted by incarceration. LSSI is accredited by the Council on Accreditation.


Media Contacts


Barb Kraeger Hailey

Aunt Martha’s

Kenny Martín-Ocasio

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