We have many talented and dedicated staff at KVC Kentucky. In Spotlight on Providers, we’ll introduce you to some of our best providers. This month we chat with Kenneth Johnson, who is a Family Preservation Specialist in the FIVCO Region.
Why did you decide to become a service provider?
I was working as a service provider for another company that worked with nursing homes and local schools. An opportunity became available at KVC and after some investigation I decided it would be a great way to help more people. I am predisposed to social work, because I’m the type of person who is always looking for new ways I can use my skills to benefit people and the community.
What are some of your own personal strengths that make you well-suited to this field?
I’m a very good listener and I’m also a minister. A lot of skills I’ve developed through ministry transfer well to social work. Ministry and social work are in the same ball field, but they use different techniques.
I’m also a caring person. There’s a phrase I use when I work with my my clients: “keep things real.” I try to respect everyone I work with and encourage them. Once you have respect and trust established, you can then help treat and learn with the clients. I learn something from every client.
What do you think makes KVC Kentucky one of the top mental health providers in the state?
The time we are able to spend with clients in the Family Preservation and Diversion programs are more consistent than other programs I’ve worked in. The programs’ intensity can accomplish more and develop a better bond of trust, which encourages more people to believe that our services will help them. It also pushes me to do the best I can and urges people to take advantage of the services we provide.
What are some of the challenges and successes you’ve experienced as a service provider?
The biggest challenge is overcoming a family’s mistrust, because they believe I am there to work against them. By following my phrase, “keeping it real,” they come to understand that my desire to help them with their situation is genuine.
As for one of my successes, there was a young couple I worked with twice before the services really took with them. They both had substance abuse problems, which is why they were referred to KVC. I recently did a six month follow-up. They’re each leading their individual outpatient AA and NA meetings. They’re very involved in community outreach to aid other people with problems. They’re leaders now. They’ve really taken advantage of the services and it makes me feel good that I helped them.