News & Events
“Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts.”
— Henri Frederic Amiel
In this season of thanks, we’re sharing a photo album with you. Take a look to see just some of the things we’re grateful for.
Individuals We Serve: Nellie, Charlie, Tina and many others share their stories with us every year. Whether they choose to talk about their lives publicly or share with their Guild team, we’re honored by the opportunity to partner with them on their journey. And we’re amazed and humbled by their courage and resilience.
Staff: Tou, Gail, Robbin, Angela, and Mary were among staff members who told us more about the goals of the services they provide, their specific roles on their teams, and the true meaning of their day-to-day work, giving us a behind-the-scenes, in-their-own-words look at why they do what they do. We’re grateful to all staff members, across programs and services, for their passion, knowledge, dedication, and persistence. We continue to feature staff on social media. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to get the latest.
Volunteers and Donors give their time, passion, and resources to help us meet our mission every single day. Addressing and stuffing envelopes, moving furniture, teaching classes, donating goods and services, befriending those who experience isolation, talking about our work at community events, engaging their friends, families, and colleagues in our work; walking to raise funds for advocacy and to beat stigma, and so much more. We couldn’t do our work without them, and it certainly wouldn’t be as much fun!
Partners: We couldn’t do our work without the support and collaboration of numerous partners in the community. Colleague organizations who collaborate with us on initiatives and pilot projects, police officers who come to our office for crisis intervention training, landlords who work with us on housing, hospital and clinic staff…the list goes on and on. This summer, individuals receiving our Intensive Residential Treatment Services (IRTS) enjoyed a day on the river thanks to Let’s Go Fishing, a nonprofit providing opportunity for people who otherwise might not get the chance to go boating and fishing. The Steve Rummler HOPE Network trained Guild staff on how to recognize and reverse opioid overdoses. And 191 clients and their families who are in need will receive a holiday meal from Thanksgiving Meals on Wheels.
Celebrations: We had many moments of celebration this year. Guild board member, Melissa Scanlan-Duncan, participated in the Arthur Murray Minneapolis’ Dancing with Twin Cities Celebrities, and became the 2018 Dance for the Cause Champion! We are grateful that she designated Guild as the recipient for funds raised. As part of Guild for All, our Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity initiative, staff were led through an activity where they were asked to stand under a sign that represented the facet of their personality they most want to be known for. The group under “Compassion” was so large, they filled up an entire wall! And a long-standing tradition – the Delancey Services Picnic – brought staff, individuals served and their families, and even a few pets together for a BBQ, conversation, camaraderie, and fun. Delancey Services works with people who have histories of homelessness.
Thank you for being part of our community, and for making these moments possible. We are grateful for you!
November 13, 2018
Looking for work is a big job – a job that becomes even bigger when you face barriers, like a lack of self-confidence, lapses in work history, or underdeveloped people skills. Fortunately, big jobs are the perfect fit for Guild’s Employment Services team.
Resume Writing as Confidence-Builder
Employment Specialists take what can feel like a daunting task and turn it into a confidence-building opportunity. “It’s amazing when we help someone put together a resume,” says Peggy Darmody, Employment Services Manager. “People often say, ‘Wow, I can’t believe that’s me – I’ve never seen my experience written down on paper that way.’” Resume creation is often the first step in breaking down the fear that can easily set in when people have had to leave the workforce to take care of their mental health.
Addressing Employment Gaps
Employment gaps are often a significant stressor because people begin to doubt their abilities and because they’re not sure how to talk about periods of unemployment. By working with both employers and clients, Employment Specialists help to bridge that gap. “Some people don’t have the people skills to connect with employers or figure out how to explain their employment history,” Peggy explains. “Employment Specialists must have a unique skill set: they need to be able to work as effectively with employers as they do with clients.”
Working with Employers and Job Seekers
Weekly meetings with potential employers are a requirement for Employment Specialists, providing an opportunity for them to learn about available jobs and to create partnerships. They also meet with existing employers – those who employ individuals served by Guild –to provide ongoing support with a focus on retention. From Peggy’s perspective, the approach creates a win-win, “All employers have individuals that are dealing with mental health challenges,” she says. “Some of them just don’t know it.” By working together – Employee, Employer, and Employment Specialist – workplace challenges can be discussed, and support needs identified and implemented.
Value of Ongoing Support, Ken’s Story
Ongoing support is critical in helping people maintain employment in the competitive workforce. This was especially true for Ken who had a job in retail, but found the environment created significant stress, exacerbating his mental health symptoms. Employment Specialist, Ellie, worked with Ken to create an employment plan based on his interests, strengths, and preferences and to find a job that reflected his goals. He works in a group home now and recently celebrated his two-year employment anniversary. ““Every day that I go to work, I realize that I do get a lot of self-confidence out of it,” he says of his life today. “I do matter. People do enjoy my company.”
Expanding Services to More Adults and to Youth!
Ken’s sentiment echoes what Peggy maintains about the value of employment in recovery: “Working gives people the chance to be productive, to create structure and routine, and to make new friends.” It’s one of the reasons she’s excited to see the work expand. Thanks to an Innovation Grant from the Minnesota Department of Human Services, Guild’s Employment team has expanded to bring services to more adults and to start something new – providing services to youth. Working with youth is a prospect that Peggy finds invigorating: “We’ll have the opportunity to shape future workers and link that – earlier on – with recovery.”
Ways You Can Help:
Help Us Connect with Employers: Are you an employer or do you know an employer who might be interested in partnering with our Employment Services Team? Contact our Employment Services Program Manager.
Help Us Reach $5,000 in Matching Funds for Employment Services: Give to the Max on November 15.
Join Our Team: We have an Employment Specialist position available. Learn more about the job.
More About Guild’s Employment Services:
- Provides help and support to individuals — using the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) model and a person-centered approach — so they can find, get, and keep jobs in the competitive labor market.
- Number of teams: 1
- Counties served: Dakota, Ramsey, and Scott
- Accepts referrals from: Guild Incorporated’s Targeted Case Management and Delancey Services, Scott County Targeted Case Management, Mental Health Targeted Case Management providers in Dakota County, Youth Innovations – School Districts, Link Drop In Center, and Lincoln Place.
October 25, 2018
As many of you know, in 2016, in partnership with Scott County, Guild was awarded a planning grant from the Department of Human Services to plan for the development of a Mental Health Crisis Stabilization and Intensive Residential Treatment Services (IRTS) Center located in Scott County. This vision is becoming a reality.
The 2018 Minnesota Legislature approved partial funding for this project through state bonds. Many thanks to Mayor Janet Williams and Representative Drew Christensen, both from Savage, who worked hard to make this possible.
The need is clear. Scott County had a 96% increase in short-term crisis stabilization utilization from 2012 to 2016 and a 76% increase in need for IRTS services. Last year, Guild’s Residential Crisis and Treatment Center in South St. Paul (Maureen’s House and Guild South) were only able to accept 27% of people referred for services, due to a lack of space. In other words, 73% of people seeking crisis and IRTS services from Guild were turned away – not because they didn’t meet criteria – but because our beds were full.
Those who are turned away likely seek services elsewhere, and those lucky enough to find a bed often end up having to travel long distances. Others end up waiting for an open hospital bed, sitting in the emergency department or just going home where, often, the crisis gets worse.
The core of Guild’s mission is to provide integrated treatment and services in the community. Crisis Stabilization and IRTS are effective because individuals can work to integrate recovery into their everyday lives. Building another crisis stabilization and treatment center in Savage will provide services to residents who are in need – enabling them to find hope and healing near home with their personal support system close and accessible.
For Guild, this is an opportunity to meet a community-identified need and make a positive impact on the lives of individuals. This represents our Board’s priority to bring the services that Guild does well to more people. From a business perspective, expanding our Crisis and IRTS services represents an opportunity to create economy of scale, with no need to develop additional infrastructural support. Guild will lease the facility, owned by Scott County, and oversee the services, so there will be no capital expense.
We are looking for individuals to partner with to make this a reality, and we need your help. If you have interest in this project, please connect with George Broostin at firstname.lastname@example.org
Needs include additional financial resources to assist with ramp-up costs, individuals who can open doors to potential funders or stakeholders in the Scott County region, and individuals who are willing to tell their stories about Guild to help us provide a warm introduction to our new community.
As always, we value your interest and support. Thank you so much for being part of Guild.
Julie Bluhm, Executive Director
September 27, 2018
Just out of jail. No housing. No insurance. No healthcare providers. Little support. That sums up the circumstances one person was facing when referred to our Targeted Case Management (TCM) Services.
It’s the kind of story Melissa Klein, Program Manager, hears from staff, and one she’s not forgotten. “It seemed like an impossible task to get the person reconnected due to numerous legal barriers, mental health symptoms, and cognitive functioning,” she says.
With no time to spare, our TCM team moved quickly, working together to:
• Find and secure temporary housing
• Coordinate a stay at a crisis facility
• Complete insurance paperwork
• Reconnect the person to healthcare providers
• Help them get back on medications
With the team’s ongoing support, the individual slowly gained stability. Hope returned. With time, hard work, resilience, and perseverance, the person is now:
• Living in an apartment
• Re-establishing relationships with family and their natural support system
• Experiencing life without further legal issues
Though TCM teams work amidst a “landscape of ever-changing services and available resources,” Melissa recounts weekly stories of progress, recovery, and hope. “Targeted Case Management Services help to create health by providing individualized support, advocacy, and access to necessary services and resources,” she says.
Without this kind of support, many would not be able to navigate the complicated system and get the help that they need.
Team members, including case managers and nurses, promote integrated care by placing emphasis on physical, mental, and chemical health stability. Staff monitors the progress of individuals continuously, linking them to appropriate support and coordinating resources with a goal of improving health and quality of life.
Melissa credits supportive and passionate staff members for the positive outcomes of the work: “I’m so thankful to be a part of this program and to see the significant impact the services make, the lives that are changed, and the hope that is instilled.”
More About Targeted Case Management:
Provides: access to housing, medical, social, educational, vocational, financial, and other services that may be necessary to address individuals mental and physical health needs.
Number of teams: 3; Bluebird, Dove, and Sparrow Teams
Counties served: Dakota, Ramsey, Hennepin, Anoka, Washington, Scott, and Carver
June 20, 2018
In partnership with Scott and Dakota Counties, Guild Incorporated’s Executive Director, Julie Bluhm, has been working on a project to expand Intensive Residential Treatment Services (IRTS) and Crisis Services to the Scott County Region.
According to county representatives, the expansion would address significant community need. Scott County experienced a 96% increase in short-term Residential Crisis Stabilization utilization from 2012 to 2016 and a 76% increase in longer-term Intensive Residential Treatment Services utilization. Dakota County experienced a 44% increase in residents accessing short-term Residential Crisis Stabilization Services from 2012 to 2016.
The expanded services would be provided in a new building proposed for downtown Savage. The facility would be built and owned by Scott County with Guild Incorporated as the service provider.
Remarking on the project, Julie said, “An important part of our strategic plan for growth includes mutually beneficial partnerships and expanding our current services to areas that are under-served.”
Southwest News Media has been covering the project. Read the latest article.
We’ll bring you more as the project progresses.
May 30, 2018