One of the essential partnerships that Lifeways has developed goes against the static norm of providing resources to our community members. So often, a client walks into any organization and they walk out with a list of phone numbers of places to call. A few years ago, Jackson was awarded a grant that allowed them to develop an online platform that could connect individuals electronically for assistance with social determinants of health needs. What this means is by adopting this new concept of delivering services, regardless of where a client was, they could have a direct link to Lifeways services just by answering a few questions. Lifeways received an electronic message stating “this client needs your help” and now its our responsibility to reach out to them, no more putting all the responsibility on the client.
There was no more need to pick up the telephone and work through the many phone numbers we keep on hand, there is no longer a need for a client to decided if they were going to use their last bus ticket to get assistance with mental health or employment and forgoing the other. They could have referrals made to all the services that they needed from one location.
Not only can clients be referred directly to Lifeways through this means but Lifeways can always connect clients to community resources this way as well. The mission is to serve individuals holistically, this goes beyond just their mental health. This partnership now allows Lifeways to easily make electronic referrals to organizations who can help with housing, employment and food assistance all just by walking in our door.