Assistance to Organizations

Culture Connections’ approach to cultural competence has evolved from Family Connections own journey toward cultural competence, which began in 2006 with the formation of our Cultural Competence Committee (CCC). As part of the Agency’s Quality Improvement Program, the CCC grew out of our staff’s desire to improve cultural awareness and sensitivity for both staff and consumers.

Through our evolution, Culture Connections provides free, on-site, and customized technical assistance services that are designed to help participating agencies and their leadership:

  • meet State contract requirements for cultural competence in a meaningful way;
  • improve consumer retention rates and the overall quality of services;
  • improve staff morale and decrease staff turnover;
  • obtain buy-in from staff at all levels to improve organizational cultural competence.

Technical Assistance is available to all northern New Jersey DMHAS-contracted mental health and/or substance use agencies and self-help centers in the following counties: Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Morris, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex and Warren.

Assistance to Organizations

We focus on Best Practices to Integrate Cultural Competence into agency culture:

  • By incorporating it into an organization’s existing infrastructure (under Quality Assurance, for example) or creating a new cultural competence-specific infrastructure which formalizes cultural competence activities planning, reporting, and accountability.
  • Encouraging support from the top of an organization as boards and management influence agency culture.
  • Engagement of staff at all levels and recognition that cultural competence can improve outcomes and overall quality of care.
  • All training and activities are conducted in a safe, incremental, and thoughtful way, taking into consideration that culture can be a complex and sensitive topic. Also, keep learning experiences are varied, interactive, and fun!

TA begins with an initial explanation of Culture Connections’ coaching role and consultation to discuss your agency’s strengths and history in cultural competence. This can include assistance with development of a committee or other structure and an individualized plan with your agency’s goals specific to the agency’s needs an parameters. It is customized to each individual agency’s needs.

We can help agency leadership:

  • Select Change Leader(s);
  • Gather baseline assessment data to identify areas for progress;
  • Develop or enhance an existing plan to integrate cultural competence into all aspects of an organization;
  • Educate and strengthen your workforce;
  • Build processes to evaluate your efforts in a data driven way.

This assistance can include:

  • Attending committee and treatment team meetings
  • Providing you with needed tools, including organizational assessments
  • On-site training to create a discussion around the roles and needs of all levels of staff around cultural competence
  • Additional web-based TA opportunities through virtual meetings as a means to create a forum for you to join with other agencies on the same journey
  • And lending our experience from our experience assisting other agencies and our own journey toward cultural competence at our agency.

Feedback from Technical Assistance Partners:

  • “Working with Culture Connections is very helpful.”
  • “I really enjoyed working with Culture Connections… it can help make us the most culturally sensitive and responsive outpatient mental health/social service agency exhibiting best practices in this area.”
  • “We look forward to continuing this valuable partnership!”

For more information or to set up an initial consultation, please contact us by clicking here.