A Message from the CEO:
The concept I associate most with Spring – even late Spring, is, of course, change. In California, we really don’t experience the significant changes in weather other regions enjoy. However, subtle changes are taking place everywhere around us, and even small changes can bring about huge results. Nowhere is this more prevalent than at Trinity Youth Services.
This past month, Trinity team members from every location and every level of the organization collaborated on a new four-year strategic plan that will guide the agency through some very significant changes. I believe the strategic planning process is always a good exercise. It provides the agency with an opportunity to review and reconnect to our mission (what we do), our vision (what we want to be at our best) and our values (what drives us forward, even when the burdens seem to outweigh the benefits).
The team overwhelmingly supported keeping the mission statement intact. We still believe the statement, “Helping children and families create a better future,” aptly describes what the agency does, at its core. However, our vision statement changed dramatically. In the past, the vision statement reflected a desire to be the first choice for funders and placing agencies, and yes, that is still important, because it signifies those stakeholder groups that keep us in business, financially, have enough confidence in us to invest in our success. However, the team felt it was more important to declare that the agency, at its very best, is what we provide to children and families, how we prepare them for the “better future” our mission statement describes. Our vision statement now reflects our desires:
To cultivate an environment of compassionate quality care.
To plant seeds of hope and resiliency.
To nurture the development of children and families empowered for success.
The primary values of the agency have changed very little. The driving forces of the agency continue to be stated as follows:
We value safety, well-being and permanency for children, youth, and families.
We value embracing research, best practices and proven approaches that help children and youth.
We value employees and will provide them with the knowledge, skills, and tools to be successful.
We value the ability to adapt and change to the needs of those we serve.
We value open, honest, and transparent governance and management practices.
The decision was made to add two additional statements. One that reflects the agency’s commitment to ensuring the children and families we serve receive the highest quality programs and services, without regard for race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, ability or any other factor, and, as an agency, we will strive to recruit, retain and provide opportunity for promotion to staff that reflect, represent and inspire those we serve.
We value Diversity, Inclusion and Equity in all we do.
The second additional statement declares Trinity’s gratitude for the numerous partnerships that assist us and enable us to fulfill our mission. This includes the board of directors, staff, volunteers, vendors, placing agencies, governing and monitoring entities, donors, and community supporters.
We value the relationships with all stakeholder groups that enable us to do this good work.
I believe the strategic planning team’s changes help to ensure the mission, vision and value statements of Trinity Youth Services accurately represent the intentionality with which we should all strive to approach work that is truly meaningful. Reading these words inspires me and makes me proud to be associated with the agency and with each and every one of our staff.
Caterpillars are always inching their way toward becoming their best and most beautiful selves. At Trinity Youth Services, we should do no less. Wishing everyone a happy May and a wonderful springtime season.
View the full 2022-2026 Strategic Plan published here.
Cher Ofstedahl, CEO
Cher leads our agency which serves over 200 children and families daily through residential therapeutic services, mental health programs, foster care and adoption services. Cher advocates for children in need after experiencing her own childhood trauma. Her firsthand experience gives her unique insight into our mission to help children and families create a better future. Cher has been with Trinity Youth Services for over 20 years In 2019, Cher completed her master’s degree in ethical leadership from Claremont Lincoln University. Cher currently serves on the Human Relations Committee for the City of Claremont to help oversee their Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts, serves on the Policy and Practice Commission for the Child Welfare League of America (CWLA), is on the Juvenile Justice Steering Committee for the California Alliance for Children & Families, is a Design Thinking Department Advisor at University of California, Riverside and serves on the board for the Association of Community Human Service Agencies (ACHSA). In 2018, she was recognized by Senator Anthony Portantino as Outstanding Nonprofit Executive Director and, in 2022, Cher was named Woman of Distinction by Assemblymember Chris Holden.