I never know how many people have seen our Mission Statement or have taken the time to really think about it:
Mohawk Opportunities is committed to helping individuals living with Mental Illness, HIV/AIDS and those
who are homeless achieve stable community living and independence by providing:
- Housing that is safe and affordable
- Services that facilitate growth and recovery
- Relationships built on a foundation of caring and respect and
- A sense of hope for the future
The statement has some relevance as we go through these unsettled times………….it outlines the values of who we are and what we do. Our agency has been built on a foundation that calls us to provide assistance when assistance is needed and to engage in relationships that are caring and respectful. Our Mission statement acknowledges that people have to feel safe if they are going to remain stable and that they need a sense of hope for their future. This thinking has been a part of Mohawk’s Core Values since the Agency began in 1968. Our First Executive Director, Eileen Cregg was an advocate for the under-served, for fairness and for opportunity. She was an advocate for Social Justice and that is why when she retired, the Board of Directors acknowledged her work by setting up the “Peace and Social Justice Day” an extra day off each year that staff could use to do something good in the world.
All individuals need to feel that others care about them. All individuals need to feel they are safe. All individual have the right to be treated with respect. All individuals need to be able live with a sense of hope for the future.
As you scratch your head trying to process what’s going on in our world and as you struggle with the many mixed emotions generated by the recent events I encourage you to reflect on our agency’s values and how they might apply to the current events. We are a diverse community, we are a diverse staff, we serve a diverse population, we are a diverse agency. We bring a diverse set of political and social beliefs with us as we interact in the community and at work but I think we can all agree that we all need to feel safe, we all want to be treated with respect and we all want to be able to look to the future with hope knowing that others care.
Our clients may also be scratching their head trying to figure out what is going on. They may also be struggling with many mixed emotions. As always, we need to be there for them and be a resource helping them figure things out. I ask that during the next few days you check in with your clients to see how they are doing with everything that is happening. Listen to what they have to say and if needed help them process it. Let them know you are there for them and encourage them to stay safe.
Thank you for believing in our values. Thank you for doing what you are doing for our clients. Thank you for caring. Thank you for helping us all get to a better place.
Joseph Gallagher, Executive Director of Mohawk Opportunities,Inc.