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Keystone Institute India Our Guiding Values
Adopted by Keystone Human Services International and The Hans Foundation for Keystone Institute India
We believe in the sanctity (preciousness, sacredness) of all human life.
This belief guides us to approach our work with a deep recognition that each and every human life has value, that true equality among all people must be what our efforts are working toward. Everything we do within our partnership must work toward recognizing and honoring each human being, including those with disabilities. Within this belief lies our shared understanding that vulnerable people must be seen as unique individuals, that disability must be understood from a social perspective rather than a medical one, and that safeguarding the welfare of vulnerable people will include fostering both people and organizations becoming strong and more independent, freed from dependence and marginalization. To accomplish this, we will always promote and model individualized, person-centered processes that keep the welfare of people and society at the heart of our work.
We believe that all people should have access to the universal “Good Things of Life.”
The good things of life include such universal human needs as home, friends, family, community membership, financial stability, being respected by others, and experiencing normative freedom and autonomy within the society. We recognize that it is having valued social roles which bring this well-being to all people within all societies, and all that we do will contribute to people with disabilities having valued and authentic roles within Indian society and their local communities. Implicit in this belief is the recognition that segregation and congregation of marginalized people inevitably leads to poor treatment, and we will assure that our shared efforts are always moving toward inclusion in normative, everyday life, and away from segregation and separation by disability. In particular, we believe in the natural authority of families, as they know their family member and deeply identity with them in ways that professionals and care-givers rarely can.
We believe that all our efforts should contribute toward an improved quality of life for all people, and that welfare of human society as a whole depends upon the well-being of each member.
A society learns to embrace and celebrate its own natural diversity only when it engages in everyday life side-by-side with people who may be considered different. Tolerance, respect, and dignity afforded to people with disability will be facilitated by assisting such people to live in typical ways, and experience many of the natural pathways of Indian life. All that we do and say should portray a positive interpretation of people with disability, through our language, behavior, media, and action.
We believe that we have an obligation to develop and mentor strong and powerful leaders to carry the work of creating a just and inclusive society.
Finding, developing, equipping, and connecting emerging leadership will bring our foundational work into the future. We will seek those who authentically desire change, those who identify deeply with vulnerable people, and those passionate about working for change. Humility, deep commitment, and the will to translate ideas into action are characteristics we will seek, nurture, and build in everything we do.
We believe we have an obligation to keep our promises.
To work toward the freedom and equality of others, we must, first and foremost, keep our promises to vulnerable people and those who care about them. Trust must be earned. Partnerships with all facets of government, people with disability, family groups will be marked by honesty, responsiveness, and will work toward developing services that are both relevant to people’s needs and effective at meeting those needs. Only in this way will wariness turn to trust and shared commitment.
We believe that all people have enormous lifelong potential to grow, learn, and achieve and bring these positive expectations to all our shared work.
Those high and optimistic expectations apply to us as a partnership, to people with disabilities, to families, and to organizations. They will be reflected in the education we provide, in the way we advocate, and in the services we promote. We have an obligation to apply these high developmental expectations to the most vulnerable populations, including people from rural areas, people living in deep poverty, and people experiencing the most deeply devalued impairments and disabilities. We recognize that many people with disability will require some support across the lifespan, and such support must be flexible, responsive, and adaptable over time.