The mission of Tides Family Services, Inc., a Lasallian ministry, is to provide high-risk youth with comprehensive and preventative services that foster personal growth and stability and better connect them with their families and communities. The overall goal if these efforts is within the Lasallian mission, which is to touch the lives of the young and their families and offer our presence and service for the authentic human development of those entrusted to our care.
Tides Family Services hopes to serve a larger population of youth and families through a broader vision. Tides Family Services will offer its clients comprehensive, quality care. Rewards for the Agency's participation in an integrated delivery system include: 1) assurance of a continuum of client care; 2) expansion of the current program services; and 3) a system of continuous assessment and improvement of the organization.
Tides Family Services values represent the objectives of the mission statement as follows:
- We believe in providing care and service that recognize and effectively respond to each client's values, culture, language, abilities and rights.
- We believe in advocating on behalf of our clients, speaking out for those whose voices are not heard, and in providing community leadership and education on client issues and concerns.
- We believe in building staff skills and abilities and encouraging creativity and a positive sense of ownership to better meet the present and future needs of our clients.
- We believe in uniting the traditional social work model of care and service -designed to provide clients with everything needed to recover from and prevent crisis-with a best practice emphasis on specific treatment criteria and measurable outcomes.
- We believe in ensuring financial stability and strength by developing and maintaining multiple funding sources.
- We believe in collaborating and cooperating with like organizations to ensure an integrated service delivery system to the region and to effectively respond to the ever-changing needs of the community and the human service environment.
- We believe in continuous quality improvement in order to enhance programmatic and administrative abilities to better meet the needs of our clients.
- We believe in the preservation of families, whenever possible, and in a strength-based, family systems approach to that preservation.
THE ORGANIZATIONAL HISTORY
1. De La Salle Christian Brothers
John Baptist de La Salle, first son of wealthy parents living in Reims, France over three hundred years ago, was named Canon of the Reims Cathedral at age sixteen. Though he had to assume the administration of family affairs after his parents died, he completed his theological studies and was ordained a priest in 1678. Two years later he received a doctorate in theology. Meanwhile, he became tentatively involved with a group of rough and barely literate young men in order to establish a school for poor boys.
At that time, few people lived in luxury, but most people were extremely poor: peasants in the country, and slum dwellers in the towns. Only a few could send their children to school; most children had little hope for the future. Moved by the plight of the poor who seemed so far from salvation, either in this world or the next, John Baptist de La Salle, determined to initiate his own talents and advanced education to the service of the children often left to themselves and badly brought up. To be more effective, he abandoned his family home, moved in with the teachers, renounced his position as Canon and his wealth, and so formed the community that became known as the Brothers of the Christian Schools.
John Baptist de La Salle was a pioneer in founding training colleges for teachers, reform schools for delinquents, technical schools, and secondary schools for modern languages, arts and sciences. His work quickly spread through France and, after his death continued to spread across the globe. In 1900 John Baptist de La Salle was declared a Saint, and in 1950, because of his life and inspirational writings, he was made Patron Saint of all those who work in the field of education. John Baptist de La Salle inspired others how to teach and care for young people, how to meet failure and frailty with compassion, how to affirm, strengthen and heal. Throughout the years, the mission of the Brothers of the Christian Schools has evolved to include family service agencies such as Tides Family Services. At the present time, there are De La Salle schools and ministries in 80 different countries around the globe.
2. Tides Family Services, Inc.
Tides Family Services, a non-profit family service agency dedicated to Rhode Island's most at-risk youth, was founded by Brother Michael Reis in 1983. Br. Michael brought with him decades of professional experience to the Tides Family Services mission, having worked for years with delinquent youth. In 1975, Br. Michael co-founded the Ocean Tides School; a center that has become one of the most successful programs for court supervised youth in the country. At the end of his term as President of Ocean Tides in 1982, Br. Michael, recognizing a clear need for these at-risk youth to have more support in their families and communities, decided to take on a new challenge. Br. Michael designed a program that would work to preserve youth in their families and communities, providing the support and services they needed at a critical time in their lives. Thus, in 1983, Tides Family Services was born.
Since then, Tides has developed services to include counseling, outreach and tracking, home-based therapeutic services, advocacy and educational programs for youth at risk for school failure. Our at-risk population ranges from families with children who display early signs of risky behaviors to families with youth returning to their communities from the State Training School.
Since its incorporation, Tides Family Services has grown into a family of its own, a new generation of dedicated and energetic outreach workers, social workers and clinicians alive with the Spirit and mission of St. John Baptist De La Salle. Throughout its growth, Tides Family Services remains true to its mission in developing programs that meet the needs of a very specific population. An agency without walls, Tides staff can be found on the streets, in schools, in Family Court, in homes and at the neighborhood basketball courts. Wherever kids gather, Tides follows.