Guest Column: The Mission of the Next Step Clubhouse – Albert Lea Tribune

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Guest column by Jason Hoiseth

The mission statement of the Next Step Clubhouse is as follows:

The purpose of the Next Step Clubhouse is to provide a safe environment that provides companionship, acceptance and support for users of mental health services.

The Next Step Clubhouse is a safe place for adults with mental illness to enjoy social, recreational and mental health services. The clubhouse is located at 216 S. Washington Ave. Some of the things offered at the clubhouse are free laundry machines, televisions, board games, arts and crafts, cooking projects, exercise bikes, sunlamps with relaxation sounds, and a game station. The clubhouse also offers programs such as a men’s group, women’s group, health and wellness group, shopping group, volunteer opportunities and field trips such as baseball games, the State Fair, shopping at Mankato, Mall of America, Viking Training Camp, plays and the zoo from Como.

The Next Step Clubhouse is a non-profit organization funded in part by the South Central Community Based Initiative (SCCBI). The Clubhouse is a referral based resource. Referrals are accepted from licensed mental health professionals. The Clubhouse serves adults 18 and older with Severe and Persistent Mental Illness (SPMI). These disorders include schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder, borderline personality disorder, and schizoaffective disorder. However, if a referral source believes that a client would benefit from the Clubhouse’s services, each referral will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. All members must be residents of Freeborn County.

Jason Hoiseth, a clerk with the Freeborn County Department of Human Services and coordinator of the Next Step Clubhouse.

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