Kandiyohi County welcomes new well being and human companies director – West Central Tribune

Angelena Iglesia


— For her complete life Caroline Chan, the brand new

Kandiyohi County Well being and Human Providers

director, has wished to assist. She grew up in a household the place they had been all the time searching for methods to help others, whether or not by foster care or donating cash.

“Each since I used to be younger I knew I used to be a connector and I cherished to tug individuals collectively and resolve issues and make life higher for others,” Chan mentioned, who has been in her new publish for a few month.

Her skilled profession has adopted that path. In 2019, Chan graduated from Saint Mary’s College of Minnesota with a grasp’s diploma in well being and human companies administration.

She labored a number of years at Venture Turnabout aiding these with substance abuse and playing problems, after which labored at Bethesda, most just lately because the chief improvement officer. When the Well being and Human Providers directorship place grew to become out there, Chan mentioned she felt known as to make use of her expertise in numerous methods and to assist extra individuals.

“I’ve the chance to go from serving a thousand individuals a day to having an influence on 50,000 individuals,” Chan mentioned. “What an unimaginable alternative to do this.”

Well being and Human Providers is liable for many alternative companies and packages: grownup and kids’s psychological well being companies; incapacity companies; growing old care; illness prevention; youngster safety; public well being nurses; and monetary help such because the Supplemental Vitamin Help Program.

Chan mentioned she has had expertise with lots of these in each her private and personal life. She is a foster mum or dad, cares for a sister with a incapacity and has assisted shoppers with numerous packages and companies in her profession.

“How can we take a look at our methods and create stronger and more healthy areas for individuals to name dwelling and dwell their finest lives has all the time been one thing I’ve touched on,” Chan mentioned, including she is happy about her new place as a result of it lets her work in all of those areas without delay.

Chan is beginning at Well being and Human Providers at a really attention-grabbing time. With the pandemic emergency over and adjustments coming from the state stage round numerous packages and companies, the county is wanting towards the long run and how one can higher serve county residents and supply the companies they may want.

Kandiyohi County melded its public well being and human companies departments collectively years in the past, although the work continues on making a seamless system.

“Transfer that needle ahead to an built-in well being and human companies system that actually seems to be on the individual — and the way can we assist that particular person and household in a holistic means that actually promotes their independence and likewise helps them dwell their finest lives,” Chan mentioned.

Chan mentioned Kandiyohi County already has an excellent division and that’s helped much more due to an keen and resilient employees. As a substitute of being afraid of change, Chan mentioned staff are pushing for it. Top-of-the-line issues about her new job is the prospect work with the employees.

“They’re dedicated to serving others, many at their most susceptible moments,” Chan mentioned. “That could be a very rewarding expertise, to know I’ve an opportunity to be a part of that workforce and lead that workforce.”

Workforce is a problem for the division, however Chan mentioned they are not in a disaster. Nonetheless, to higher recruit employees, Chan desires to higher talk simply what well being and human companies does.

“As a result of our eligibility employees confirmed up as we speak, there are households which are going to eat and have a roof over their head,” Chan mentioned. “That’s unimaginable, impactful work and it is time we begin celebrating the true influence the work they do has.”

There have been headlines within the information over the previous couple of years about fraud and folks profiting from well being and human companies packages. Chan mentioned when these instances occur, they should be acted on and adjustments made. Nonetheless, a couple of dangerous instances should not negatively influence all the great that’s achieved. The danger of coping with dangerous actors is price it to feed a baby or assist a household in misery. And who is aware of if and when one would possibly want the companies Well being and Human Providers gives.

“We’re all one circumstance away from needing these companies which are offered right here. Irrespective of who we’re, or what we do for a dwelling,” Chan mentioned. “I am grateful we’ve these alternatives to assist a household get again on their ft.”

Well being and Human Providers are additionally on the entrance strains to assist make the neighborhood as an entire a greater and more healthy place to dwell. This contains offering immunization clinics, licenses and inspections for meals and beverage institutions and selling wholesome existence.

“Most significantly, Well being and Human Providers is already there doing the background and the forefront work to make sure the very best high quality of well being and security for our communities,” Chan mentioned.

It has been a whirlwind 4 weeks as Chan will get her ft beneath her with Kandiyohi County. With the help from the employees, County Board and administration, Chan is assured Kandiyohi County will proceed to supply the perfect companies and care to its neighborhood as we speak and tomorrow.

“I believe there are nice alternatives to construct on these robust foundations to assist our neighborhood thrive additional into the long run,” Chan mentioned.

Shelby Lindrud

Shelby Lindrud is a reporter with the West Central Tribune of Willmar. Her focus areas are arts and leisure, agriculture, options writing and the Kandiyohi County Board.

She could be reached through electronic mail [email protected] or direct 320-214-4373.

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