Fulfilling the Promise

I’ve mentioned before that Hillsides is in the process of seeking an accreditation with a national organization, the Council on Accreditation. This week a few staff members, including myself, attended the Triennial Conference of the Council on Accreditation in New York City. Organizations like Hillsides gathered to discuss best practices in child welfare and behavioral health care. As useful as many workshops were, what I found most worthwhile was coming together with so many who are clearly committed to providing the best care possible for some of the most vulnerable.

We provide excellent care to those we serve; the challenge lies with being able to demonstrate that excellence measured against nationally held standards of practice. Currently, Hillsides is accredited by a state wide provider’s association. The standards of the Council of Accreditation exceed those of our current accrediting body and really insist on the development of an organizational culture that is not only driven by a commitment to provide fine services, but is also rigorous in sustaining a constant process of improvement. This important accreditation that we seek will validate our fine work, advance our stated mission to create lasting change, and position us within the provider community as having achieved excellence.
The conference opened with a quote from an unnamed sage, “if you want to know the past, touch a rock; if you want to know the present, touch a flower; but if you want to know the future, touch a child!” How absolutely true and it is for this reason that we strive for excellence because the opportunity to influence the future by caring for our children now is so precious that it must not be squandered. In a particular way for such vulnerable children and youth, whose needs are so great, every effort must be made to keep them safe, improve their well-being, and offer them permanency.
Accreditation is not a panacea, but it is an indicator of our commitment and resolve to provide the best care possible for all we serve.
Visit this blog for updates on our progress toward accreditation. As we prepare for the final submission of documentation in anticipation of an on-site review by an accreditation panel in early November, we continue to be hopeful that our efforts will advance our goal to be always an extraordinary resource for the children, youth and families we serve.

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