Written by Julie Bluhm. Julie, a social worker by training, is passionate about driving systemic change and creating solutions that really work. Julie joined Guild as the CEO/Executive Director in 2017.
As you have likely noticed, we’ve undergone some major (and exciting!) updates. From dropping “Incorporated” to launching a new website, we’re more ready than ever to serve our communities. While we’re thrilled about our new look, we’re even more excited about our renewed focus and vision for the future. This rebrand, something we’ve been looking forward to for years, reconnects us to our purpose—to engage, connect with, and serve those around us.
Since 1993, we’ve been Guild Incorporated, but most of you know and love us as the Guild. So, we decided to stick to our long history and roots and become “Guild.”
Our founders, The Guild of Catholic Women, gave us this name. Guild broadly means “bringing people together who share a common purpose.” It’s been used to describe an association of artists or professionals connected by their common experiences, goals, and skills. A Guild is a connection of equals—on a journey together—learning from each other and, ultimately, choosing their own paths. This describes exactly how we approach our work. Our Guild is a connection founded on our shared human experience of moving through life, in all its glory and struggles.
While we have a new look, we’re still the Guild you know and love. We’ve embraced this opportunity to take a fresh look at our purpose, values, and vision for the future. What you’ll see on our “About Us” page is the result of our reflection on our history and our plan for the future. We promise to build from our strong foundation and continue to grow as an organization that elevates the voices and emphasizes equity.
While our look has changed, our services remain the same. Innovative and lifesaving. We provide a broad array of services, which we’ve categorized as “mental health, housing, and jobs.” The people who receive these services from Guild are often with us for many years. We maintain these positive relationships because we tailor the intensity of services to each individual’s unique needs. All of our services have one commonality and that is integration. We believe that people deserve to live, work, and become fully integrated into that community, not segregated by their diagnoses or abilities.
At Guild, we always “look to the light,” as one of our clients so aptly said. And, our future continues to be bright! We are opening a new Crisis and Recovery Center in Scott County in August. This center represents both the expansion of our services and our entry into a new community. We are grateful to the city of Savage, who has been incredibly welcoming, and we are looking forward to this new relationship. We’re also updating our Saint Paul offices located on Wabasha and making improvements that will increase collaboration and community building.
In addition to our physical growth, we are also growing digitally! We’ve joined Instagram (follow us!) and debuted this blog. We’re inviting staff, clients, friends, and family to participate—if you’re interested in guest blogging or contributing to our social media, email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also expect some changes in the way we communicate and more regular updates from us that provide fresh perspectives and updates on current events, stories, and new information about our work.
Lastly, thank you. Thank you for your support, your stories, and your dedication to advocate for others. You are a part of Guild and we welcome you along for this new step in our journey.