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Create a shared mission, vision, and values.

Each participating agency will bring its own values, philosophical foundations, and knowledge to the collaboration. These often differ more than anticipated. For instance, the definition of “intimate partner” may vary from organization to organization. While disability programs often include abuse by hired caregivers in the definition, domestic violence organizations tend to define this term as a romantic relationship. Exploring these differences is a first step in establishing shared values and a mission and vision for your work together. Many collaborations have found it helpful to include in their mission a commitment by each organization to engage in self-reflection and change organizational policies and culture to enhance safety and accessibility.

Resources You Can Use

  • Project SAFE Vision and Mission Statements. VIBS Family Project SAFE in Suffolk County, NY created these vision and mission statements to guide their work with survivors with physical and/or developmental disabilities.
  • MASS Collaboration Vision and Mission Statements. Boston Area Rape Crisis Center, Boston Center for Independent Living, and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority developed a vision of the experiences of survivors with disabilities in Boston and created a corresponding mission statement to communicate how they will achieve that vision.
  • Intersections Values and Assumptions. As part of their collaboration charter, the Intersections collaboration in Boulder, CO developed a set of values and assumptions that guide their work together and the work of their agencies at the intersection of sexual assault and disability.
  • King County Values and Working Assumptions. The Domestic Violence and Mental Health Collaboration in King County, WA articulated a set of values and working assumptions to establish a common philosophical framework for working with domestic violence survivors with mental health concerns.