by Theresa Reyes-Cummings, GPC
The Behavioral Health Field is filled with professionals who often have a number of credentials in their signatures. It is like an alphabet soup of acronyms: QMHP, PHD, MD, RN, MHP, PS and the list goes on. Why is this important? Why should a Grant Professional working in the behavioral health field seek a credential?
A credentialing certificate in any profession serves multiple purposes. A credential provides a guarantee that the person who holds the credential has met minimum professional and ethical standards for their profession. It also serves to protect the public with whom you may interact.
Grant professionals working in the behavioral health field are an integral component of any agency delivering behavioral health care. While they may not provide direct care to participants, they serve to seek funding and resources to ensure all participants can access and receive the care they need. Grant Professionals and their work ultimately benefits the participants and communities that are being served. They tell these stories and provide data to current and potential funders demonstrating how investments made into their organization will yield both short and long-term results.
Just as it is expected that a therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, peer-specialist or any professional delivering behavioral health care have and maintain a license or credential, so should other members of the behavioral health care team, including the grant professional. A Grant Professional Certified (GPC) credential makes several statements:
- You are a professional member of the team who also meets the highest quality of your profession and maintains the ethical standards for your field.
- Investors can see that your agency values their grant professionals as an important component of their leadership team.
- It adds to the level of credibility you have within your agency and in the community.
Why is this credibility important? In the behavioral health field, Measuring long-term outcomes is complicated because there are so many variables that can affect a participant’s well-being. There is not a blood test to measure if someone is getting better or worse when it comes to behavioral and emotional well-being. A Grant professional, with a GPC credential, demonstrates with their certification that they have the depth of knowledge and wide range of experience to use the right data, story-telling and abstract meaningful information to share within the agency, external partners, and funders.