In June 2019, the Family Counseling Center, Inc. board of directors, employees, clients, and stakeholders celebrated 45 years of service to the southern Illinois community. Since 2014, the organization has seen exponential growth like no other time in its history. Record revenue, program diversity, and the surge in recipients of services have led Family Counseling Center, Inc. to reexamine its mission and brand.
In late 2019, a campaign was launched to rebrand the organization with a new name, vision, and refreshed mission for 2020…
Our number one challenge in 2021 was to keep an adequate workforce to meet our communities’ needs. This has been a challenge since the Illinois budget impasse, however, the situation has become even direr. Many of our efforts to address and improve the capacity of our workforce were dealt additional blows with the continuation of COVID-19’s impact, Illinois’ minimum wage scheduled increases, as well as Illinois’ historical population loss. All factors were out of our governance.
According to the 2020 US Census, Illinois saw the second-largest population loss in the US. All counties we served experienced loss with Alexander County seeing the lowest dip in population in the Nation at 36%. This was a direct hit to the pool of available human service professionals in our region.
This continued workforce crisis limited the number of individuals in our community we could serve as we maxed out our capacity. At the same time, the demand for services did not cease. COVID-19 has brought on different challenges this year compared to 2020 as the demand for services dramatically increased post-infection peak in January 2021.
Even with the many tests we face, we are still making unbelievable progress in resource and opportunity offerings, site expansions, and formal partnerships across our service area and the State.
We have led collaborative efforts with our stakeholders and partners with fortitude in an environment where relationship building seems backseat-worthy. We have sought out programs based upon need rather than adding resources and opportunities to our service array because funding was simply available or in the spirit of competition with like providers. And we continue to have a profound impact on our local community by contributing more than $12.5 million to the economy, creating 269 jobs, and serving 3,313 clients. We do all of this by first asking, “why?”
Why is it important to build well-being and help others reach their full potential? Why value community collaboration? Why focus on strengthening the entire region instead of just us? Why is innovation and curiosity required in the human services industry? Why invest in our employees not only financially but in their professional development and mental health?
The question of “why” drives us at Arrowleaf to be a determined and passionate family. We will not be disheartened in our work – as we envision a Southern Illinois where all individuals are contributing to a community that is safe and vibrant for everyone.
Sherrie L. Crabb
Chief Executive Officer