Why should you undertake the challenge of EAGLE Accreditation?
The standards of EAGLE Accreditation were developed by the EAGLE Accreditation Commission, industry consultants, and task forces comprised of members in the field. EAGLE’s primary emphasis is on excellence in Christian ministry, with a focus on how applicant organizations incorporate their Christian mission, religious heritage and values throughout the organization and its daily operations. Other areas of emphasis include focusing on results and outcomes, striving to improve, meeting legal and regulatory requirements, and ensuring privacy, accuracy, accessibility and confidentiality of both client and staff data and information.
While we were created by a Methodist-related organization; historically, ecclesiastically and theologically, Methodists are ecumenical in our approach to faith. John Wesley, our founder, said, “If your heart is as my heart, give me your hand.” By that, he meant that we don’t have to believe alike in order to join together in doing God’s work on earth: We simply need to agree on the basics of love for God and service to humanity. With this in mind, the EAGLE standards were composed around four core values and are NOT prescriptive in how any organization lives out its faith values. Instead, the goal is to build a foundation of quality that leads the organization towards excellence.
With this approach, ten Principles (below) and related Topics were established to promote excellence in Christian health care and human service ministries. The Principles list the major areas of emphasis to which excellent organizations adhere, and Topics ask the “How” questions—how your organization adheres to specified standards of excellence and best practice. Following each set of questions are lists of Expectations. The expectations are hints as to what must be included in the organization’s Self Study, and also a checklist for Peer Reviewers to look for in your answers.
The EAGLE Accreditation Principles
Principle 1: Christian Mission and Church Relationship
The mission of an EAGLE accredited organization is one of Christian mission and service. Furthermore the organization is clearly connected to a Christian church or denomination.
Principle 2: Clients Served Through Holistic Care
An EAGLE accredited organization has clearly defined the clients it will serve and recognizes, understands, and properly responds to the individual needs of those clients by providing holistic care that addresses their social, emotional, physical, spiritual, intellectual, vocational and environmental well being.
Principle 3: Community Involvement
An EAGLE accredited organization, in addition to those whom it directly serves, purposefully contributes to, advocates for, educates, and provides others with various forms of support or assistance that serve needy and under-served individuals and families within its community.
Principle 4: Governance and Leadership
The governing body of an EAGLE accredited organization is a responsible, informed, inclusive, and accountable body whose key roles are policy making and functioning as a fiduciary to protect the interests of the organization and its key stakeholders. It ensures the organization has a strategy for achieving the long-range mission of the organization. It recruits and selects the chief executive officer. It has independence in review and audit functions, as well as a performance evaluation function that monitors the performance of the organization and the chief executive officer.
Principle 5: Commitment to Excellence
An EAGLE accredited organization strives for service excellence through structured, on-going methodologies for assuring and improving the quality of its programs, services, facilities, and leadership. It also has formal internal processes in place to assure ethical and legal behavior in the governance system, throughout the organization, and in its interactions with clients, other publics, and stakeholders.
Principle 6: Workforce Excellence
An EAGLE accredited organization engages, manages, and develops its workforce to ensure all staff members are qualified, well-oriented and trained to perform their functions efficiently, effectively, and safely in support of the organization’s mission. Its work environment promotes dignity, encourages and provides opportunities for professional and personal growth, conveys a Christian orientation, and emphasizes ethical relationships and interactions.
Principle 7: Physical Resources Management
An EAGLE accredited organization exercises environmentally responsible stewardship over its land, facilities, and equipment, while treating applicable governmental health and safety standards as the minimum above and beyond which the organization will operate.
Principle 8: Financial Resources Management
An EAGLE accredited organization has a moral and spiritual obligation to exercise responsible stewardship over its assets, liabilities, and risks.
Principle 9: Information Management and Security
An EAGLE accredited organization recognizes it has a moral and spiritual obligation to diligently protect the privacy and confidentiality of client and staff data and information. It collects data and information necessary for the efficient and effective operation of the organization, and uses such information in order to improve organizational performance. Its information management and security practices are consistent with all applicable laws and regulations.
Principle 10: Markets and Clients
An EAGLE accredited organization has an integrated marketing and public relations program that effectively positions it to respond to the needs of target markets, and furthers the operational and strategic goals of the organization.