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Case Study: Community Outreach at Community Counseling Centers of Chicago

This article was published on:
August 29, 2012

When nonprofit work is ‘on the go’ more than in the office.

The Community Counseling Centers of Chicago (C4) is a community based mental health provider helping clients in crisis or simply needing assistance navigating in the community. More than 20 licensed clinical social workers crisscross the city delivery counseling and support services on a daily basis so their work is more ‘on the go’ then in the office.

C4’s CIO, Danielle Byron, knew that mobile Internet connectivity was a must for enabling productivity and true community outreach, but it came at a cost. That is why when C4 learned they could cut their costs from $60 a month to only $10 a month, the business case was an easy one.

 “With low-cost mobile Internet from Mobile Citizen, not only could we expand our program to more clinicians and clients, we could afford additional netbooks. Together, these tools make life easier for our clinicians and better for our clients.”

—    Danielle Byron, C4 Chief Information Officer


Best Practices:

For Clinicians: Access to online records

C4 originally signed up for mobile Internet because it gave clinicians instant access to information they needed to effectively do their jobs: internal databases, medical records and case histories. When responding to clients in crisis, it is never in the office, at their desk, tied to their computers. It is at a school, a home or even the hospital. Clinicians now access information when, and where, they need it. And they log service notes immediately so there was no need to drive back to the office to do so.


For Clients: Access to safety net resources

As soon as clinicians were given mobile Internet, they found new and innovative ways to use it. In working with clients, they could now connect them with ‘safety net’ resources such as shelter or food bank locations and information such as rules and steps for applying for Medicare and Medicaid.