On a mission
“We will meet the needs of our communities, creating opportunities for all to develop in body, mind & spirit”
What do we mean by our mission statement? Are we talking about just you and me? Is it those people who have jobs? Or those studying or training? Or is it referring to those who are doing much needed voluntary work? Does it include those struggling with alcohol dependencies? Someone who is addicted to drugs or those who supply the drugs? Is it the marginalised? Those sleeping rough or sofa surfing? Those struggling with their mental health? Does it include the wealthy in our community? Is anyone excluded?
When we came up with the mission statement I personally thought this was a bold statement for us to be making especially when you contemplate what the implications are of making such a claim; it’s realising that we are probably scratching the surface and we need to reach out even further to the edges of our communities where there is so much more for us to accomplish.
For us providing a person with a roof over their heads is not the end of our work, it’s just the beginning. Our aspiration is that we will provide a safe community in whatever shape that is, either in the housing projects, attending team programme, family learning, independent living skills, our afterschool and holiday clubs or the community coffee shop where individuals will be treated as equal’s in a non-judgmental way, supported by dedicated knowledgeable and encouraging staff to ensure that all our service users, feel welcome and valued in an environment in which they can engage in activities which stimulate and challenge them to take responsibility, but also to find a sense of achievement and pride in themselves.
We are characterised by our distinctive values that flow from our Christian ethos.
- We welcome and offer people space where they feel they belong and are secure, a space where they’re respected, heard and valued. Our aim is to create a culture that always protects, creates trust, hope and perseverance.
- We look for occasions to make a transformative impact on the lives of those we work with so they can contribute to the community where they live.
- We look for opportunities that will inspire those people we support to enable them to thrive as individuals.
In creating this series of articles called ‘YMCA Bedfordshire Is‘, we want to breathe life into the values and core characteristics that flow from our mission statement. Words are good but actions are better! The following set of articles, written by staff from across our portfolio of services will, I hope, help to show how we live out the challenge facing us, that of how we keep looking for opportunities that will help us seek to improve the social provision for our community wherever that may be. I hope you enjoy reading them.
CEO YMCA Bedfordshire