Step 3: Articulate the Program Vision for Mental Health Services (Strategic Planning Meeting 1)

Step 3: Articulate the Program Vision for Mental Health Services (Strategic Planning Meeting 1)

In Module 1 of this tutorial, you learned about the importance of having a vision for mental health services that includes having everyone understand what is meant by “mental health” in your program; developing a holistic approach to mental health that addresses the relationships of child, family, and staff wellness; clear roles for families, staff, consultants and administrators; and a clear statement of expected goals and outcomes for your mental health approach. Now it is time to work on making this vision clear, and translating into an actionable strategic plan, with input from the team members.

In your first two-hour strategic planning meeting with your full team, we recommend starting by developing a written vision statement for your mental health services that identifies the overarching approach to mental wellness in your program — an “imagined future” that you are striving for. It should articulate your philosophy or theoretical approach to mental health within your agency and should reflect the guiding principles of children’s mental health. A vision statement states the values (or guiding beliefs) and the purpose of the mental health services within your organization. Get group consensus on this written vision statement, and use it as a “touchstone” for developing your strategic plan—everything else in the strategic plan should be related to helping your program achieve this vision.

Vision Statement Example

Once you have an agreed-upon vision statement, develop a plan for sharing it broadly with the rest of your staff—as you learned in Module 1, it is essential that everyone, from bus drivers and cooks to the executive director, understand what you are trying to achieve in terms of mental wellness.

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This product was developed [in part] under grant number 1H79SM082070-01 from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The views, policies and opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of SAMHSA or HHS.