Teaching children strong values gives them the best protection possible. Young adults who carry these values within themselves have the resilience to handle life’s most difficult challenges. We offer a consistent approach to caring for children and teens. We train our staff in a model of care that is firmly grounded in the values of honesty, respect, responsibility, empowerment, compassion and spirituality.
We promote protective factors. We reduce risk factors. Our core values are at the heart of it all.
We look at the whole child.
We work as partners with everyone involved in the child’s life—the parents, teachers, social workers, court counselors, and, of course, the child himself—to develop a thorough assessment and create a plan that builds on his strengths and addresses his needs.
We train and immerse our staff—and the children and teens we care for—in our values-based model. Visit any MHC group home and you’ll see posters promoting our values hanging alongside the chore charts. You’ll hear resident counselors working one-on-one with young people to:
- recognize and describe specific behavior in a non-judgmental way
- reinforce positive behavior
- teach new skills that are needed
- demonstrate vision of a successful future
- connect the behavior to a value
Each staff member parent also has special crisis-intervention counseling skills from which to draw.
We provide a structured, nurturing environment.
Each day, children can count on having family meals together, regular study hours, some free time as well as time set apart for family activities, devotions and contemplation. They learn a lot about responsibility, teamwork and initiative as they work together to prepare meals and keep up their home and its grounds. They learn respect for one another’s feelings and needs. They gain compassion for others’ suffering by helping in their community. Their spiritual lives are greatly enriched.
We encourage young people to look within themselves for strength and to look outside themselves for meaning.
We encourage their hobbies and creativity. We help them develop life skills. We connect them with mentors and get them involved with the wider community so they know they are valued and needed members of society.
We go to great lengths to recognize, reinforce and celebrate each child’s progress.
Every evening in our group homes, a staff member spends time with each young person, looking back over the day’s challenges and triumphs, large and small. Together, they decide which skills and behaviors to focus on tomorrow. A multi-tiered recognition system motivates and supports all the young people as they internalize the core values of honesty, respect, responsibility, empowerment, compassion and spirituality.
It all comes back to values—and to helping young people grow up strong, healthy, responsible and kind.