Empowerment and motivation can help anyone achieve their dreams and are core principles of a person-centered approach. Founded by Carl Rogers in the 1940s, this approach is based on the belief that every human being has the capacity to fulfil their own potential. This principle has been guiding Federation’s staff for years as they successfully help people help themselves.
Randy, a 55-year-old, who lives in Federation’s Scattered Site Housing, began working with Case Manager Elizabeth Accordino in May 2016. She found that he was having difficulty taking his medication, was experiencing distressing side effects and was growing increasingly concerned that those effects would last forever.
Accordino provided Randy with medication training, so that he would understand the purpose of the medication and how it would help him. Once Randy understood that such medications must be taken consistently and work most effectively over time, he began to view the medication as being worthwhile. Eventually, he recognized that it helped him function better.
Accordino also helped Randy develop a strategy for discussing his concerns with his medical treatment team. She even got Randy to view the things he enjoys – such as biking and working with tools – as useful for coping with symptoms and dealing with challenges to recovery.
By practicing this person-centered approach to recovery, Accordino is able view each individual’s situation as unique and important. This empathetic approach helps guide her as she develops a trusting relationship free from judgment.
“We try to understand the individual’s issues personally,” said Accordino. “It helps us see the clients from their perspective and addresses any false beliefs that may be in place.”
For Randy, once the goal of medication is fully attained, he will work on achieving another goal of improving socialization. Along with Accordino, Randy’s social worker and his pyschiatrist are committed collaborators in his recovery.
“Person-centered…[is] something that has always been at the core of what Federation does,” Accordino said.