Soon after my arrival in Kent I had a chance to participate in one of Coleman Services orientation seminars. Not only was I impressed with the information provided about the services they manage I was equally impressed with the organization itself. As a devotee of running the City like a business, I admired how well Coleman had integrated business practices into their organization performance. Not only do they talk the talk, they walk the walk. Don’t let the fact that they provide behavioral and rehabilitation programs fool you into thinking this is another run-of-the-mill social service agency. This is a company in the business of serving people’s needs with a solid financial model for paying their own way and diversifying their revenue base — which just grew by another $96,000 thanks to a grant from the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation.
In spending time at Coleman Services I saw an organization that had taken steps to improve their market position, think strategically, and cultivate an entrepreneurial spirit. They have established cost and performance metrics to calculate rates of return and optimize return on investment through sound capitalization strategies. Their employees have been trained in quality techniques and critical thinking and they know how to manage cash flow, drive productivity and inspire innovation. Not exactly and your grandfather’s social service agency.
But while Coleman works like a business it still acts with the heart of non-profit, putting their client’s needs above making money. When faced with a choice, they remain true to their mission to serve first and make money second so that the special needs of individuals in our region are met.
In case you can’t tell by now, I’m a huge fan of Coleman Services. They represent the best of what Kent has to offer. Kent has always prided itself on being a community with a conscience which means they look out for the little guy who might get pushed aside somewhere else. There’s room in Kent for everyone which is why I refer to Kent as a City with a full 360 degrees of people living in it. To that end, Coleman makes it possible for Kent to live up to it’s promise of being a community for everyone, which is one reason I was delighted to read of their recent grant award.
COLEMAN PROFESSIONAL SERVICES RECEIVES $96,000 GRANT FROM MARGARET CLARK MORGAN FOUNDATION FOR AWARENESS CAMPAIGN
KENT, Ohio (April 7, 2008) – Coleman Professional Services was recently awarded a $96,000 grant from the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation of Hudson, Ohio, in an initiative to implement a regional mental health awareness campaign.
Coleman, a regional behavioral health and rehabilitation organization headquartered in Kent, will lead a four county initiative directed at local colleges and universities to educate students on the facts and issues regarding behavioral health and mental illness. The initiative will develop a repeatable awareness model that can be implemented at numerous universities to encourage more students to openly discuss the common issues facing their campus communities relating to mental illness and to understand the resources available to help their friends and family recover.
Coleman will be contracting with the University of Akron’s Institute for Health and Social Policy to coordinate a series of ten focus groups to garner information from college students to measure levels of current attitudes and awareness of mental health issues. The Institute will also complete a program evaluation in the spring of 2008, after implementation, to determine the efficacy of the program.
Meghan Urbon of Coleman Profession Services will serve as the program coordinator to coordinate efforts with the county Mental Health and Recovery Boards in Portage, Stark, Summit and Trumbull Counties and a Curriculum Developer to construct an effective awareness campaign curriculum by utilizing data collected from the focus groups. The curriculum will then be implemented in at least four yet to be determined Ohio colleges and universities.
President of the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation, Mr. Rick Kellar said, “We are grateful to have a collaborative partner like Coleman Professional Services to lead this important project. We look forward to an outcome of real behavioral change over time, rather than transparent ads that have no real or lasting impact.”
This comprehensive campaign initiative resulted from a group of preliminary planning group sessions for four months in 2007 comprised of four Mental Health and Recovery Boards, representatives from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and key members from the Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation and Coleman Professional Services who met to discuss possible campaign ideas. Work on the newly funded initiative has begun this month and completion is anticipated in spring or summer of 2009.
Coleman Professional Services is a nationally recognized not-for-profit provider of behavioral health and rehabilitation programs that improve the lives of individuals, families and businesses in Northeast Ohio. The company relies on an enterprise business model to diversify its funding. Coleman’s foundation and three enterprise companies produce more than 40 percent of the company’s funding for its award-winning programs.
The Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation’s mission is to improve mental health practices in Northeast Ohio through effective investment in progressive organizations and innovative initiatives that raises the standards of prevention, treatment and recovery.
For more information on Coleman Professional Services or the services it offers, visit Coleman Services.
Oh, and by the way, this year marks the 30th anniversary of Coleman. Here’s a short write-up that hit the newswire complements of Crains Business Magazine:
February 25, 2008
Coleman Professional Services began work in 1978 with 35 employees, an annual budget of less than $1 million and a mission to provide counseling services for residents of Portage County.
Today, Coleman provides behavioral health and rehabilitation programs that improve the lives of individuals, families and businesses in five Northeast Ohio counties. It employs 450 and has an annual budget of more than $20 million.
The CEO is Nelson W. Burns.
Congratulations and keep up the great work!