January 31, 2019
The i2i Center for Integrative Health hit the one year mark on January 1, 2019, and what a year of building and growth it has been for the organization! In 12 short months, i2i staff have met with leaders representing all segments of the public service system, as well as private sector organizations involved in the system to introduce the new organization, focusing on i2i’s mission to convene stakeholders, strategize solutions, and activate change.
When asked about these early efforts, Mary Hooper, i2i Executive Director, said, “Our Year 1 goals were pretty simple: First: to get out there and re-present ourselves and our organization so that there is no question that i2i is what we say it is: a neutral convener organization with a goal to bring together folks with common concerns about behavioral health and I-DD together to improve the system and whole person care; and second: to create a foundation that is sustainable for the foreseeable future. And honestly, I think we’ve made more progress on both fronts than even I had expected in this relatively short amount of time. We were fortunate to have garnered early support from a number of large Champion and Partner donors as well as i2i Friend sponsors in 2018, too. I have to say that our Champions and Partners are organizations that made investments primarily in the concept of i2i in that transitional year, and I cannot thank them enough for their support. Without that, we would not be where we are today!”
In addition to the continuation of many of the initiatives described above, in early 2019, i2i has already added 2 projects:
• In an effort to keep those serving children and families in the BH/IDD Medicaid system informed on the numerous challenges and changes taking place in our system, i2i will conduct training for System of Care (SOC) Coordinators and Lead Family Partners on Medicaid Transformation; Social Service and Child Welfare Restructuring; Raise the Age of Juvenile Jurisdiction; and, the federal First in Families Act on March 28, 2019.
• To strengthen advocacy for children and youth in our system, i2i will be working with the NC Collaborative for Children, Youth and Families to facilitate their work with legislators by tracking legislation and working with their Policy Advisory Committee to identify and develop strategies related to key legislative issues.
“As these recent additions point out, i2i is just getting started for 2019,” Hooper says. “i2i has gained traction, and as we receive requests to take on new projects, we’re being very diligent to ensure that our work aligns with our mission. We will identify priorities and projects based on our mission and vision — as a convener of stakeholders, to improve the quality of care and life for North Carolinians thru strategic partnerships, education, information, etc. If we stay with that, I’m pretty confident we’ll find success.”