2016 was a year of major transformation for Excelsior. Most notably, Excelsior evolved into a Community-Based System of Care that improves access to mental and behavioral healthcare for youth and their families. In addition to program and service delivery changes, this transformation involved a complete brand overhaul including a new logo and shortened name that better reflects our new operational model.
In March, Excelsior opened a dedicated community-based services office in Englewood to support this new model. This office, along with our office in Sterling, makes services more accessible to families in the Denver Metro area and along the Front Range.
Built on a foundation of family preservation, Excelsior’s community-based system of care enables us to help youth earlier and keep families together. An important part of this is working closely with the entire family, so Excelsior began accepting boys into all our programs in May.
Prevention is a large part of family preservation, which is the primary purpose of one of our most impactful new programs – Pathfinders. This after school program includes various therapeutic and educational groups and activities, including Students of the Wheel, one of our most popular groups that boasts infinite impact potential!
In September, Excelsior further expanded to serve a wider demographic, including infants and children ages 0-7. We did this by continuing the work of FACES, a longstanding nonprofit who closed its doors in August.
Still, amidst all the change and expansion, one of our favorite moments of 2016 was when seven of Excelsior’s girls came together to produce TrueStar Magazine. The project and results were impressive and inspiring – real teens confronted real teen issues in an effort to heal themselves and their peers. This reminds us why we do what we do.