When I arrived at Diakon in 2015, I was impressed with a number of things: the scope and breadth of programs, the difference those programs made in lives, the unbroken heritage of service since 1868 and the dedication and commitment of staff throughout the organization.
The time was also one of challenge and change.
We were essentially giving birth to a new organization as Diakon Child, Family & Community Ministries—offering such services as adoption and foster care, at-risk youth services and counseling and behavioral health care for people of all ages—was created as a “sister” to Diakon Lutheran Social Ministries.
In line with that creation, we needed to make more-efficient use of our limited benevolent-care dollars. We needed to grow our programs, both in scope and geography. And we needed to demonstrate our impact.