This is an open letter to the South Sound community. It has been five months since I came to this beautiful place to be executive director of The Crisis Clinic of Thurston and Mason Counties. I find myself much changed already by the experience.
The staying power of the program, and the commitment of the staff, volunteers and members of the board inspire me to reach for high ground each and every day.
I find the people I work with and for to be gracious examples of the Crisis Clinic’s core values. I find myself in awe of the safeguards and exemplary standards that the program has for training its volunteers. Each training I learn something new; I find a value seeding itself deeper within my heart and mind.
Like any program that has staying power, or any relationship that has lasted over four decades, there have been ups and downs. I find the challenges presented exhilarating. The work we do as a team to put program first, to put the callers first, well, that is humbling; it restores my faith in the resiliency found within the fragility of being human.
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I feel fortunate to find a place within this community. And I’m not just speaking of the local community, or just as a new member of the non-profit culture of sister and brother agencies, immersed in the daily outreach of direct services, but as a member of the Crisis Clinic community itself. For that is what we are here: a community, a family who is dedicated to outreach to your families and to the individuals who have no family.
This area has great and diverse direct service needs, and it also has a core of strong and dedicated service providers that we are proud to stand alongside, and be in service with.
I am grateful and honored to be here. Thank you for welcoming me. And thank you for supporting the Crisis Clinic.
As long as there is crisis, there will be a phone volunteer present and willing. Call us; we are always home.
Tennessee native Rowen O’Neill lived in New Mexico for the past 25 years before moving to Olympia and taking over leadership of The Crisis Clinic. She is a licensed mental health practitioner.