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AWARE Ink Newsletter

Note from our CEO

We recently celebrated our 3rd Annual AWARE Day. What is AWARE Day? This is an idea that came directly from our frontline staff through Corporate Congress and is designed as a special day to honor the amazing individuals we serve, our dedicated team members, and raises awareness about AWARE's mission of helping people live independent lives.

On AWARE Day, our staff and clients participated in fun activities and shared success stories. We also gave back to our communities through volunteer projects like park clean-ups and beautification efforts. This latest piece was newly added this year, as a result of another great idea from our front-line team, because it ties directly to one of our agency’s core principles, “our connection to our communities is vital.

Contemplate for a moment that you are a parent of a child with a disability. How do you help your child identify and connect to eligible services, remove barriers to live as independently as possible, successfully navigate school, develop friendships, establish a trajectory to adulthood, and lead a happy and fulfilling existence? How do you assist your child while successfully maintaining your own employment and relationships? What if you yourself live with mental illness? How do you manage your barriers to find gainful employment, a place to live, and healthy food to eat?

Montana’s Medicaid program exists in part to assist people fitting the descriptions above. In many cases, case management services can be lifesaving to these families. AWARE’s case management programs are a foundation that assists our clients with serious emotional disturbance or mental illness, autism, and/or intellectual or developmental disabilities to live with dignity and respect in Montana’s communities. Case management helps adults, children, and their families to access necessary services and support. Together, our case managers and the people we serve assess areas of need, develop goals, connect to care, and monitor services. AWARE’s case management programs serve more than 3,000 people statewide.

In this issue of Ink, we are proud to feature AWARE’s case management programs.  Our mission is to help people live independent lives. This includes helping the people we serve to live, work, go to school and play in the communities of their choosing and free from hospitals or institutions. This is the premise of community-based behavioral healthcare.

I hope you will take the time to read and learn more about this important service.

As we look ahead, summer is just around the corner. In June we will celebrate our 2024 Unconditional Care Principles Awards banquet. Winners have not been selected yet, but I can tell you the nominations are inspiring. I look forward to gathering with our team in Great Falls and celebrating and sharing more soon.

Until then… wishing you the best.


Matt Bugni – CEO

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