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AWARE Ink Newsletter

A Look Into the New Year from Our CEO

Updated: Jan 5, 2022

Dear Friends,

With the new year upon us, let us “learn from yesterday, live for today, and hope for tomorrow.” - Albert Einstein

As we turn the final page on this chapter, we look forward to the journey that lies ahead. We welcome another new year, and we will continue to apply what we’ve learned from the past. We’ll put our collective knowledge to use, as we dive into 2022, and ensure that the best possible care today is even better tomorrow.

AWARE CEO Matt Bugni

While our sights are set on the near future, I’d be remiss not to reflect for a moment on the past year. Often it is easy to focus on the things that didn’t go as planned and the things that need improvement. While that is important, I truly believe that to evolve and grow, we must also celebrate the good things – our successes, no matter how big or how small. While putting together our Annual Report, I was reminded of this. I hope you will take the time to read the full report here.

The work we do is important and is making a difference in Montana. Despite some challenges we have faced during this past year, we remain optimistic about 2022. We recently increased wages for our deserving team members, AND we increased starting wages. We believe that these increases will not only help us retain but also recruit the best workforce in the state, allowing us to increase the number of Montanans we help live independent lives. To learn more about joining the AWARE team, please visit

In case you missed it, in 2021 AWARE was awarded two major grants totaling nearly $4.6 million dollars. This month brings the official launch of both projects – the Family Assertive Community Treatment (FACT) model of care and Multi-Dimensional Family Therapy (MDFT).

We are honored that the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) identified AWARE, and our proposal to create FACT for Montanans, as worthy of $4.5 million dollars over two years. This investment in our work is a testament to the people we have on our team and our commitment to innovative ways of thinking to fulfill our mission. What excites me even more than the grant itself is the fact that we are just getting started. AWARE is using the SAMHSA grant funds to get this model of care launched while ensuring we are set up to make it sustainable in the future.

At AWARE, we believe in providing a wraparound approach to care and treatment. To best achieve this approach and to support the implementation of Family First legislation in Montana, AWARE applied for and received funding from the PacificSource Community Health Excellence grant program. These funds will be used to train AWARE clinicians in MDFT. This new provision of care will be implemented in our school-based services, residential services, and will be a primary therapy used in the FACT model of care (read more about this later in this issue of INK).

I’m incredibly proud of our team for being leaders in the work we do. AWARE will be the first provider in the state to offer the FACT model of care and MDFT. These services will help Montana families and will help prevent Montanans from needing higher levels of care. Because of our unique approach to how we work as a team, AWARE is set up to provide wraparound care in the truest sense of the words. To learn more or to make a referral to AWARE, please call 406.563.8117 where you will be directed to the appropriate team member based on your needs.

In addition to launching FACT and MDFT, there are many other exciting things to come in the year ahead.

  • In Great Falls, AWARE will open a new office space that includes space for our day programs and training.

  • In Butte, new townhomes will open, providing residential services to people with disabilities.

  • We remain committed to fostering an environment that is diverse, equitable and inclusive while supporting growth for our team members, so we will continue training with William Henry.

  • In June, we will host our annual awards banquet in Billings.

  • Later this year, we will host the first-ever AWARE Day, an idea that came from Corporate Congress in 2021.

  • We will continue to pursue partnerships with institutions of higher education to help develop the workforce in Montana.

These are just a few of the opportunities ahead of us in 2022. I look forward to sharing more with you as the year progresses. Until then, I wish you a very happy and successful year ahead.


Matt Bugni


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