A Message for You from Chris Kughn, CEO, Buckelew Programs

Our journeys made easier. Together.

Welcome to all first-time visitors to our website. To returning friends and supporters, it's wonderful to have you back. As we begin the New Year I want to share with you where Buckelew Programs is as an organization and our path ahead in the coming year.

Like many North Bay residents, I'm an avid mountain biker. My routes take me into deep valleys and up steep mountains. The past year, 2020, was like the most arduous mountain ascent: challenging, humbling and even painful. As 2021 begins, we seem to have crested the top of the pandemic mountain and are beginning the cautious path back down to level ground.

I've been reflecting on how these solo rides mirror the personal journeys traveled by Buckelew clients. During Covid, we continued to faithfully serve our clients with counseling, recovery, employment and housing services. As appropriate, we adjusted the delivery of our programs, using online and other technologies to stay connected with and support our clients during this difficult time. Our residential homes and onsite care continued without interruption. I extend a heartfelt thank you to our dedicated staff for their unwavering commitment to our clients.

Buckelew Programs' commitment to our community and its residents is to provide exemplary mental health services, now and into the future.

  • We are appropriately moving to an agency-wide "whole person" model where we can help address all physical and environmental issues that affect mental health conditions.
  • We work towards the reduction of stigma in all of our services and communities so that individuals have access to needed services.
  • We are dedicated to action, not merely words, to ensure that ours is a diverse, equitable and inclusive agency.
  • We recognize the importance of providing a culturally sensitive workplace and services to meet the needs of a diverse range of clients.
  • We will collaborate with partner agencies that are similarly dedicated to strengthening lives and building stronger communities.

The need for mental health care increased in 2020 and will continue to increase in 2021. Before Covid, residents in our five-county service area had already experienced trauma from devastating wild fires. These stressful events have been layered on top of existing traumas.

But our commitment is sustainable with the support of the greater community. We are being challenged with reduced funding by government agencies for mental health services, though we are trying to build a stronger base of philanthropic supporters to bridge financial gaps and help secure our future. We are grateful for the ongoing support of our community partners and generous donors who help us deliver vital services.

Reaching the mountain top is an accomplishment. Getting back down safely is a triumph. For our clients, their journey is one of setting personal challenges, accepting setbacks, and achieving goals. Much like theirs is our collective Covid journey. Eventually, we will return to level ground and a new normal. We will be stronger for having made the journey.

I am proud to serve as Buckelew Programs' CEO. I invite you to reach out with your questions, suggestions and support. And if you're a mountain bike rider, I hope to see you on the trails!

With compassion and gratitude,

Chris Kughn, LMFT
CEO, Buckelew Programs