About Us

The Northern Regional Center for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs (CYSHCN) is dedicated to meeting family needs through a statewide coordinated system of information, referral and follow up, family to family support and strong partnerships with providers in 15 counties and 6 tribes of northern Wisconsin.

We provide free and confidential services for children:

  • Less than 22 years of age
  • with a physical, developmental, behavioral or emotional condition that has lasted over a year or will last that long
  • who require more health or educational services than other children their same age

The Northern Regional Center office is located in Wausau, Wisconsin and supports 15 counties and 6 tribes. Staff are available to help problem-solve, provide information or make referrals to community, state, and national resources. We regularly travel in the area so can drop off resources, meet for coffee, or host a training in your home community.

The Northern Regional Center for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs (CYSHCN) is funded by the Public Health Division of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, through the Maternal and Child Health Title V Services Block Grant. More information about the network of CYSHCN programs in Wisconsin is available here: northernregionalcenter.org/about/cyshcn-network/

CYSHCN Philosophy

We believe that:

  • Children are best served within their family
  • Children and families are best supported within the context of their community
  • Families need to have convenient access to care coordinators
  • Collaboration is the best way to provide comprehensive services
  • Family perspectives and presence must be included in all aspects of the system.

Our goal is to meet the needs of children and youth with special needs by focusing on the unique strengths of family members, responding to all requests in a timely manner, by finding resources as close to home as possible and by working with local partners collaboratively to serve the children and their families.

CYSHCN Mission

The Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs Program will collaborate with national, state and community-based partners to link children to appropriate services, close service gaps, reduce duplication and develop policies to better serve families.


Allison Lourash, Program Manager

Allison has over 20 years of personal and professional experience working with families who are navigating systems to help their kids. Being born with a physical disability and other familial experiences have shaped Allison’s career and she is excited to partner with families, providers, and others in the CYSHCN Network across the state to find answers and support families.

Allison Lourash

Anne Williams, Community Specialist

Anne provides support to Florence, Forest, Oneida, and Vilas counties primarily. We are excited to have someone local to the area to help families and identify needed trainings and activities. Anne’s interest in helping families of children with special health care needs stems from her own experiences as a parent of a child who experienced hearing loss. Anne’s background is in youth development, community outreach, program development, and journalism. She lives in Rhinelander with her husband and three children, and recently completed her Master’s Degree in Community & Organizational Leadership.

Anne Williams


Aby Sauter, Administrative Support

Picture of Aby behind a display table