From left: One Hope United CEO Todd Schultz, Lake Villa Mayor James McDonald and Chief of Police Craig Somerville, and One Hope United Assistant Director Corey Dickson and Board Chair Theresa Dear.
On Friday, during a quarterly board meeting, One Hope United presented its Galaxy Award for outstanding teamwork to the Lake Villa (Illinois) Police Department. Mayor James McDonald and Chief of Police Craig Somerville accepted the award on the department’s behalf.
This is the first time One Hope United has bestowed its Galaxy Award on an external team. When presenting the award, Corey Dickson, who oversees One Hope United’s Lake Villa residential program, explained that it was appropriate to recognize the police department with this award because he views them as an extension of the campus team. “For all that your guys and your ladies do for us – that your department does for us – we’re very appreciative,” Dickson said.
One Hope United CEO Todd Schultz said that a sense of collaboration was present from his very first meeting with Chief Somerville. “We view this as a partnership, and we couldn’t be doing this without you,” he said.
The residential program in Lake Villa serves young men ages 9 to 18 in care of the state whose past traumas make it harder for them to succeed in a home-like setting. Therapists on the Lake Villa campus provide supervision and individualized treatment to help the youth address their symptoms and build their capacity for growth and essential life skills.
“They’re a part of this community, and that means we’re here to serve them, too,” Chief Somerville said about the campus youth. He also recognized the work of the One Hope United staff, who are the first line of care for the youth. “These are the people that are the heroes here,” he said. “It’s a tough job.”
One Hope United Board Chair Theresa Dear closed the event by thanking the Mayor and Chief on behalf of the board and inviting them to join the board for lunch. As part of the award, One Hope United provided lunch to the entire Lake Villa Police Department the following week.