Helping America’s Most Vulnerable
Since 1896, Volunteers of America’s ministry of service has supported and empowered America’s most vulnerable people, touching the mind, body and spirit of those we serve. Volunteers of America Southeast Louisiana addresses the most challenging issues of the day and develops innovative solutions to meet the needs of our community. Our diverse offering of more than 20 human services programs enables us to support and empower children, families, seniors, individuals with disabilities and veterans in 16 south Louisiana parishes. Delivering lifesaving short-term as well as lifelong services to those in need, we support over 50,000 of the most underserved individuals in our community annually. As an affiliate of a leading national human service charity, Volunteers of America Southeast Louisiana has a rich history and a promising future in south Louisiana.
Our Work of Helping America’s Most Vulnerable reflects our century-old mission.
Volunteers of America is a movement organized to reach and uplift all people and bring them to the knowledge and active service of God.
Volunteers of America, illustrating the presence of God through all that we do, serves people and communities in need and creates opportunities for people to experience the joy of serving others.
Volunteers of America measures its success in positive change in the lives of the individuals and communities we serve.
Our vision for Volunteers of America Southeast Louisiana is to be the premier nonprofit human service provider in the quality of our programs and services, in stewardship of the resources entrusted to us, in creating new ways to serve people, in measuring our results, in managing change and planning for the future, and most of all, in living our mission of service to our community.
Volunteers of America helps the most vulnerable and under-served people achieve their full potential.
We provide services that are designed locally to address specific community needs. Our common areas of focus include promoting self-sufficiency for the homeless and for others overcoming personal crises, caring for the elderly and disabled and fostering their independence, and supporting positive development for troubled and at-risk children and youth. We look at the whole person and address both urgent and ongoing needs, with the goal of helping people become as self-reliant as possible.
We draw on more than a century of experience and the reach of a nationwide movement that is:
- Bonded by a commitment to faith, human dignity and social justice;
- Dedicated to actively engaging volunteers in the community; and
- Committed to the highest quality of service.
Our Ministry: Faith in God. Ministry to Others.
CARF Recognizes Volunteers of America Southeast Louisiana’s Quality Programs
Volunteers of America Southeast Louisiana has been granted a three-year accreditation by CARF International, an international nonprofit accreditor for health and human services. This is the FIFTH consecutive three-year award Volunteers of America Southeast Louisiana has received.
During the three day survey, the three-person team of surveyors reviewed 950 standards to evaluate the organization’s conformance in eleven separate programs. We were in complete compliance with 97% of these standards. The surveyors reviewed agency documentation, consumer records, interviewed stakeholders; such as persons served, families, staff, funders, partnering agencies and board members.
The accreditation process applies sets of standards to service areas and business practices during an on-site survey. Accreditation, however, is an ongoing process, signaling to the public that a service provider is committed to continuously improving services, encouraging feedback, and serving the community. Accreditation also demonstrates a provider’s commitment to enhance its performance, manage its risk, and distinguish its service delivery.
In January, 1998, the Board of Directors and staff made a commitment to pursue this accreditation as part of our mission to reach and uplift all persons, and measure our success in positive change in the lives of those we serve. A grant from the Volunteers of America Endowment Fund helped us with the process. The decision to seek accreditation also sprang from our desire to provide the best services that we possibly can to our consumers. CARF accreditation is a “seal of approval” that tells others they can rely on us to do not only an effective job but a superior job.
A Message From Our President & CEO
For over 127 years, Volunteers of America Southeast Louisiana has fulfilled the mission and changed the lives of the people we serve because of the generous support we receive from the community. Thank You .
Last year, our dedicated staff helped over 28,000 people in southeast Louisiana. Through our four Behavioral Health Services programs, more than 1,500 men and women gained the confidence to tackle the challenges they face each day. Our Adoption and Maternity program provided essential medical care and counseling services to over 40 women facing an unplanned pregnancy, enabling them to carry their babies to term. And 238 children in the Mentoring Children of Promise program were paired with a caring volunteer adult mentor. None of this would have been possible without your generous support.
How do we continue to maximize your support?
The first way is by maximizing government grants, which remain our primary source of funding. Despite efforts to expand governmental support for our programs. There always remains a substantial difference between what grants cover and the actually costs of serving the most vulnerable. This is what we call our funding gap. However, it is you, our donors, who bridge this gap. With your help, you ensure we have no disruptions in service for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, veterans in crisis, adoptive families, at-risk youth, children with incarcerated parents, and countless others.
The second way that we maximize your support is by developing new programs and forging innovative partnerships to address growing needs in the community. Last fall I announced the creation of the Family-Focused Recovery program. This groundbreaking initiative enables mothers to stay with their children while receiving substance use disorder treatment. Once fully implemented, it will provide a two-generation solution for substance use disorder recovery and family preservation, benefiting both expectant mothers and mothers who already have children.
The third way that we maximize your support is by echoing your concerns to lawmakers. With your invaluable help, state funding for community services for individuals with disabilities became a priority. Your unwavering support made it clear that beneficial legislation on this matter was important and helped ensure the future of our intellectual and development disability services.
I am blessed to have highly skilled and committed staff here at Volunteers of America. They can accomplish so much with your generous contributions. Our team of 450 +employees remain the “heart and soul” of our mission because of their passion for serving others. As an organization, we continue to embody our founders’ motto: “We will go wherever we are needed and do whatever comes to hand.”
I hope you are as inspired as I am about the work being accomplished here in southeast Louisiana by Volunteers of America. If you are interested in learning more about the available volunteer opportunities or you would like to make a gift to ensure that we continue to positively impact the communities we serve, I encourage you to visit www.voasela.org/give. Your support, no matter how big or small, can make the difference to the lives we serve.
Voris R. Vigee