The Power of Words:
Insight's Mission and Vision
We all know that words have power. Obvious declarations, hidden meanings, words can powerfully reflect who you are.
This year at Insight Memory Care Center, one thing we have been working on is taking a closer look at our words, starting specifically with our mission and vision statements. They were last drafted in 2014, just before we moved from Merrifield to our much-larger, current facility in Fairfax. Insight has grown tremendously over those past 8 years. Since 2014 we have added new programs and services, opened a second brick-and-mortar location in Sterling, and doubled the amount of people we serve each year.
Even with all we have grown, at first glance the mission and vision statements we had were still very relevant. We remain dedicated to providing quality care, support, and education to the population we serve. We do envision a community where they can live with the highest quality of life. With all the changes Insight - and the world! - have seen since 2014, we are proud of how we have remained committed to our mission. Our families are still at the forefront of all we do.
A few changes...
However, we did notice a few things that gave us pause. We spent time in this process talking with our families, staff, and board members. With their feedback, three things came up that we knew our words needed to address.
1. We have programs beyond our four walls in Fairfax. Our previous mission statement referenced us as an adult day health and resource center. The initial problem with this is that we now have two centers! We are so excited to have opened our Sterling Early Stage Center this past January and the growth it represents. Short of just making the statement plural, our new Sterling location is truly different; an early stage center that doesn’t operate a licensed adult day center as we do in Fairfax. For clarity sake, we knew this had to change. Beyond our two physical locations, we also have many programs that operate outside our walls in the community and even bypass our regional borders online. During the COVID crisis, we moved our programs virtually, and haven’t looked back. While we’ve brought things back in-person, we have also retained many of our virtual programs to reach people where they are. In more ways than one, we needed to now reflect that we have programs beyond our four walls in Fairfax.
2. We are committed to serving families from the early stages through the whole dementia journey. Our early stage programming has grown significantly since 2014. What used to be a 2-day a week program in one location, our Reconnections program is now operating in three locations as well as virtually, up to 4 days a week. We were one of the first in the country to offer the SHARE program, to help those in the early stages plan for future care. We are encouraging families to come to us before a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or dementia. Saying our programs served those with Alzheimer’s disease and other memory impairments began to feel limiting to this early stage group. We have updated our mission and vision to include anyone living with memory or cognitive impairment. We remain committed to serving families wherever they are on the journey.
3. We are using the term “care partner” as a subtle, but powerful shift in mindset. If you are in the long-term care space, you may have noticed this shift in providers using the term “care partner” instead of “caregiver.” It’s a subtle change in words, but powerful in many ways. As Teepa Snow explains, “a caregiver gives care, while a care partner partners in care. While this difference may seem trivial at first, it can create a powerful shift in mindset of your role.” Instead of doing things for or to your loved one, you are working with them and assisting. Partner also reinforces the dignity of the person living with memory impairment, and that they are very much still a person worthy of respect. We agree wholeheartedly with this shift in language, and have adopted the care partner term in our vocabulary and mindset as well.
After incorporating all these elements, these are Insight Memory Care Center’s new mission and vision statements:
Our mission is to provide specialized care, support, and education for individuals in all stages of memory or cognitive impairment, their care partners, and the community.
Our vision is a community where those living with memory or cognitive impairment and their care partners can achieve the highest quality of life.
Short, simple, and to the point. But still powerfully reflecting who we are today.
Activities & Engagement
"I like that IMCC focuses on dementia-related problems and provides a focal point for families to network and socially interact in coping with dementia. It provides a community that helps us in our struggle."