Mountain Home Montana’s

Strategic Plan 2020-2023

  1. Keep going.

What: Continue changing lives two generations at a time through basic needs, life skills support, and therapeutic services.

Why: Our work makes a real difference. In our most recent measures, 92% of mothers moved from our residential programs into safe and stable housing, 80% of children improved their health outcomes, and the number of moms who increased their sense of confidence and self-efficacy doubled. Because the success of our programs depends on the competencies of our staff, our strategic plan prioritizes staff recruitment and retention through increased wages and professional development. Especially because the number of children in Missoula who were removed from their homes into foster care doubled between 2008-2018, we also aim to continue to incrementally increase the numbers of families we serve.

  1. Start earlier.

What: Partner with experts to create a state-of-the-art model for children’s services, including trauma-informed childcare.

Why: Between the ages of 0-3, babies form one million neural connections every minute. Every interaction with both parents and caregivers literally shapes the infant’s brain, forming the foundation for all future learning and well-being. Unfortunately, Missoula’s waiting lists for infant child care are six months to a year at most facilities, and the facilities that are available rarely have the training and resources to provide the specific supports necessary to help young children heal from trauma. By partnering with local experts to provide trauma-informed childcare and mental health services, we give babies the best possible chance to live up to their full potential.

  1. Build infrastructure.

What: Build onsite childcare space and remodel current facilities.

Why: In order to accomplish the goals above, Mountain Home must physically grow. Our ambition is to continue to provide the majority of our services onsite or nearby, in order to maximize convenience for clients. While the details are still being finalized, we envision a phase one project of approximately 1,000 square feet to serve a minimum of 6-10 children in childcare. In the future, we will also explore partnerships for offsite locations.

Meanwhile, in order to accommodate the fact that we’ve already grown to serve more than 50% more clients since 2016, we also must reconfigure our licensed mental health center with additional private counseling and meeting spaces.

  1. Connect widely.

What: Collaborate with like-minded agencies to broaden our impact and create transformational relationships for moms and for Mountain Home.

Why: Every year in Missoula, more than 550 babies are born to single mothers between the ages of 16-24 who are living below the poverty line. Mountain Home cannot meet that tremendous need alone, yet we cannot ignore the problem. Our strategic plan includes collaboration with state and local coalitions to create systemic change ranging from better funding for behavioral health care to increasing affordable childcare options county-wide.

As well, we are piloting two programs that expand Mountain Home’s partnerships while also broadening the network of support for the people we serve. The first, Open Table, is a team-mentoring model (already active in dozens of states) where volunteers meet weekly with moms to form lasting relationships and help them achieve their goals. The second, NEXT, is a response to the many Mountain Home moms who have told us that they wish they’d had Mountain Home support before they got pregnant. We’re doing just that by partnering with Willard Alternative High School to provide our evidence-based Supported Education and Employment Program to empower young women in setting and achieving goals for their future, including avoiding unplanned pregnancy.