Vinfen’s Team 6 Adult Community Clinical Services Team Leader Ben Walsh has always been a superstar, but at Vinfen he advanced his career by earning his Licensed Practitioner of the Healing Arts (LPHA) as a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) all while pursuing his passion of helping others. Ben, along with his Vinfen community, has transformed many lives and continues to do so every day of his life.
After graduating with his bachelor’s degree at the University of Massachusetts Boston in 2010, Ben started working in a hospital. He quickly realized it was not the right fit for him. “I wanted to help people be out in the community and be independent and stay out of a restricted environment,” Ben explained.
Ben became a Vinfen employee in October of 2012. His first position at Vinfen was as a Health and Wellness Coordinator. Ben then attended grad school at Simmons University School of Social Work to pursue his LPHA as a LICSW. “I wanted to have more say in the direction treatment went for the people we serve,” Ben added. While in school, he worked at residences with overnight shifts and after two years, he returned proudly to his original Vinfen Team as a LPHA. After being a Rehabilitation Coordinator for a few years, Ben transitioned into being a Rehabilitation Specialist, and then was hired as a Team leader in July of 2018 as Vinfen transitioned from Community Based Flexible Supports to ACCS. Ben values each and every experience and continues to feel thankful for all the knowledge he has gained from his colleagues.
Ben enjoys his Vinfen network. “You are always on a team, so you’re surrounded by people who are on a similar mission to yours to provide person-centered and quality care to people. Just being in that environment of your work day is very inspiring. It also means that if you’re ever perplexed or don’t know what to do or your worried about a risk issue, you always have a supportive team of people to help you out, so you are never alone,” Ben shared. He values the collaborative team environment at Vinfen where colleagues can share information, bounce ideas off each other, and the potential to learn from others is endless.
When asked why he works for Vinfen, Ben lists many reasons why he loves his job. Because Vinfen is very person-centered and progressive, he feels as though the people Vinfen serves are getting the care and treatment that they want, need, and deserve. He also recommends that for those who are newly licensed, Vinfen is a fantastic place to learn and gain quality experience. “You interface with the Department of Mental Health, courts, schools, sometimes with law enforcement and shelters, with community organizations, employers, and housing organizations,” he explained.
Ben lives for the moments where he can share in and celebrate a person’s success. “My favorite part of this job is when a person Vinfen serves feels like they’ve made progress, so we kind of share that experience with them and the team at the same time. At team meetings, we will have shout outs where we talk about the people we serve who have made progress in their treatment plan,” Ben voiced. He added, “The key to life is having your values line up with what you are actually spending time doing.”
Having many success stories to share, Ben fondly remembers the story of a person Vinfen serves who at first was homeless and did not want to engage with anyone, hiding under a hat and behind sunglasses. After a few months of working with this person, she ended up feeling excited to go to a Vinfen group home and had tears of joy as she headed to her new home on the day before Christmas. “It was the best Christmas present I’ve ever had. To see a transformation and be a part of it was awesome!” Ben exclaimed.
Ben has big plans and wants to leave an impact on this world. From being a committee member for Vinfen’s new wellness initiatives, to forming a rock band with two other staff members and two people we serve, Ben jumps on any opportunity that will make a difference. He wants to help people help themselves, along with promoting equality and being a force against prejudice and discrimination.
“Vinfen has been very good to me. I’ve learned a lot and feel like I have been given the opportunity to make and effect a lot of change in a lot of people’s lives. I’m truly grateful for that and I like to give back whenever possible. I also want other people to be able to experience that as well,” Ben concluded.
Vinfen is hiring for a variety of positions, including LPHAs (LCSW, LICSW, LMHC, LRC, FME, LADC, OTR, RN, and Psychologists). Many positions offer a $1,000 sign-on bonus. If you have the imagination and heart to make a difference in people’s lives, Vinfen can offer you a career that truly matters! Click here to find the perfect fit for you.
Pictured above is Ben.