RAMS, Inc. (Richmond Area Multi-Services) is a private, non-profit mental health agency that is committed to advocating for and providing community based, culturally-competent, and consumer-guided comprehensive services, with an emphasis on serving Asian & Pacific Islander Americans. Founded in San Francisco's Richmond District in 1974 by the Richmond Asian Caucus and originally named "Richmond Maxi-Center", our agency offers comprehensive services that aim to meet the behavioral health, social, vocational, and educational needs of the diverse community of the San Francisco Area with special focus on the Asian & Pacific Islander American and Russian-speaking populations.
RAMS is recognized by the local and national social service community as having expertise in providing culturally competent mental health services to the underserved, with expertise in working with the Asian & Pacific Islander (A&PI) and Russian-speaking populations. The agency has received numerous awards for culturally competent service delivery, clinical training, employment of people with disability, and community leadership.
Currently, RAMS offers over 30 programs that are integrated into 11 core clinical programs:
RAMS believes in serving clients in their primary or preferred language(s) of treatment, supporting consumer choice & empowerment,
and advocating for the accessibility to services. Annually, the agency serves and outreaches to about 18,000 adults, children, youth,
and families and provide services in over 30 languages, including Asian languages – Cambodian, Chinese (Cantonese, Mandarin,
Toishanese, Taiwanese), Farsi, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese – Russian and Spanish. To meet the
diverse community needs, RAMS offers over 30 clinical programs in over 90 sites citywide.
RAMS, Inc. is committed to building partnerships with other service organizations. This goal is achieved through three major avenues:
Additional collaborative partners include, but are not limited to: NICOS Chinese Health Coalition, Asian Pacific Islander Family Resources Network, Richmond District Neighborhood Center, Asian Women's Resource Center, Chinese Community Health Plan, and San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis.
Past collaborative programs include: Asian Family Mosaic (SF Department of Public Health), Safety Network Program (Safety Network Partnership), Bridge To Wellness (San Francisco General Hospital), Rosa Parks/Benjamin Franklin Multi-Cultural Mental Health Collaborative, Senior Refugee Project (partnership with Jewish Family & Children Services and International Institute of SF, and sponsored by Office of Refugee Resettlement); Asian Community Partnership Program (funded through the California Endowment).
As part of our organizing efforts, RAMS served as an active partner in the Safety Network Partnership, organizing and engaging local community members in developing and advocating for sustainable grassroots strategies for a safer neighborhood to live, work, and play. Throughout the years RAMS organized the community through establishing the Richmond Community Coalition, setting up the Richmond Community Court, advocating for homeless services, conducting community assessments, promoting pedestrian safety, actively participating at community meetings, and consistently representing the Richmond District on citywide safety & quality of life issues. Since 2007, RAMS has actively served on the planning committee - including California State senate office, San Francisco District 1 Supervisor Eric Mar, Compassionate Community Care, Kaiser Permanente, and Self-Help for the Elderly - for the annual Richmond District Health Festival. The agency was also actively involved in the 2010 Census including hosting one of the US Census kick-off events at RAMS Hire-Ability. Previously, RAMS had launched and organized the Chinese Community Resource Day in the Richmond district.
RAMS is an active member of the NICOS Chinese Health Coalition, a consortium of more than 30 agencies serving the Asian American community in San Francisco. RAMS is also an active participant and member of the Association of San Francisco Mental Health Contractors, Asians Against Violence, California Reducing Disparities Project (CRDP) - API Strategic Planning - Bay Area Workgroup (BAWG), SF Asian & Pacific Islander Health Parity Coalition, SF Mental Health Services Act Advisory Committee, Chinese Community Internet Stop Smoking Project Task Force, Community Advisory Committee of SF Anthem Blue Cross State Sponsored Business, UCSF Depression Center Community Advisory Board, Human Services Network, and Mental Health Association of SF.
Also, RAMS participates in efforts to raise awareness about mental health issues through active participation and involvement in community events. For example, RAMS engages in sponsorship of and active planning for the Richmond District Health Festival and past years of the Sunset District’s Autumn Moon Festival, Women’s Health Day, and Asian American Psychological Association Conference as well as provided leadership in the coordination of the Chinese Community Resource Day (Richmond District). In addition, RAMS continually participates in various community efforts and events such as neighborhood health fairs, street fairs, public resource gatherings, and Project Homeless Connect.
A major portion of the funding for RAMS, Inc. is provided through Community Behavioral Health Services and Housing & Urban Health sections of SF Department of Public Health. Other sources include California Department of Rehabilitation; SF Department of Human Services; SF Unified School District; SF Department of Children, Youth & Their Families; state & local contracts and agreements; fee-for-services programs; local business ventures; foundations; grants; and private contributions & donations.
RAMS, Inc. is committed to improving the quality of its services and to enhancing desired outcomes of service delivery. The following evaluation efforts are used to assess services:
RAMS, as a contract provider with the City & County of San Francisco, are evaluated on a regular, ongoing basis. In the most recent San Francisco Citywide Fiscal and Compliance Monitoring of Current Contracts/Grants for Fiscal Year 2013-14, results concluded with no findings and no recommendations.
Furthermore, the San Francisco Department of Public Health annually conducts program evaluations which include four major areas: program performance, program deliverables, program compliance, and client satisfaction. Consistently throughout the years, RAMS programs have received Commendable/Exceeding Standards or above the Acceptable/Meets Standards ratings in all areas.
In the most recent results(FY: 2014-2015), programs scoring 100% were: Broderick Street Adult Residential, Hire-Ability Vocational Services, CAAP Counseling & Pre-Vocational Services, Peer Specialist Mental Health Certificate, Wellness Centers Program, and Summer Bridge; Adult/Older Adult Outpatient Services achieved 97% and Child, Youth & Family Services achieved 95%.
RAMS is licensed by the State of California Department of Health Services. In order to provide services to the community at
varying levels of care, RAMS maintains licenses and accreditations with various oversight entities such as:
Building on the legacy and helping shape the future of the mental health field
RAMS, Inc. was founded in 1974 by the Richmond Asian Caucus with a vision to address the needs of the mono/bilingual Asian-speaking population in the Richmond District of San Francisco through providing multi-lingual and culturally competent services. Housed in a humble two-story wood-paneled storefront situated next door to the historic Balboa Theatre, this non-profit organization was the only Asian focused mental health services center in a neighborhood district that was in the midst of an ethnic population expansion. In the first five years of operation, the annual budget was approximately $750,000 with a combined workforce of about 35 staff, interns, and trainees.
The services provided by RAMS were certainly reflective of the times during which the agency was founded, with steadily rising immigration from Asia to the United States following the passage of various laws and amendments. During the 1970’s and 1980’s, immigration patterns continued to change, with each group having its own unique circumstances. As such, RAMS continued to assess the community’s changing needs and enhance the programming structure & services to reflect these needs; the agency’s service capacity also expanded to the Russian-speaking population of the Richmond District and beyond. From 1989 to 1999, the number of programs that RAMS offered increased from four to over 20, the number of staff grew by 236%, and the annual budget of RAMS dramatically increased over 626%.
RAMS, Inc. continues to be a private, non-profit mental health agency that is committed to advocating for and providing community based, culturally-competent, and consumer-guided comprehensive services, with an emphasis on serving Asian & Pacific Islander Americans. The agency offers comprehensive services that aim to meet the behavioral health, social, vocational, and educational needs of the diverse community of the San Francisco Area with special focus on the Asian & Pacific Islander American (APIA) and Russian-speaking populations.
Since its inception over 40 years ago, RAMS continues to effectively develop, expand, and transition to meet the changing needs of our
local and cultural communities by offering a wide range of clinical program services, engaging in collaborative projects, and contributing
to the next generation of clinicians by offering extensive training and educational opportunities specializing in culturally competent practice.
The agency has expanded from a single Outpatient / Day-Treatment mental health clinic in the Richmond District to a multi-service agency
offering 30 programs integrated into 11 core clinical programs (services provided throughout San Francisco) with approximately 350 employees
and approximately 25 interns/trainees and many volunteers providing services in over 30 languages, including Asian languages – Cambodian, Chinese (Cantonese,
Mandarin, Toishanese, Taiwanese), Farsi, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese – Russian, and Spanish.
The annual budget of RAMS has grown well over 1,900%, since the first five years of operation. In 2015, half of the agency's clients
are of Asian & Pacific Islander American ethnicity, and over 32% indicate an Asian or Pacific Islander language as their primary or preferred
language for treatment and services. Approximately 6% of clients indicate Spanish and 3% of our clients designate Russian as their primary
or preferred language for treatment and services.
RAMS remains committed to providing the highest quality, clinically sound, and compassionate care to the residents of the
San Francisco Area. We know that to recognize the face of need, one must look beyond appearances to gain a deeper
understanding of realities that are not always seen at first glance. Our responsibility and commitment to mental health care
quality and education extends beyond our own walls to reach people of all ages and backgrounds in our community through
outreach and serving them in their own environments. This philosophy of care has always been central to our approach at RAMS.
As we move forward, our sights are set on further enhancing services with innovative programs that reflect the integration of
treatment models and systems-of-care. RAMS continues to further develop and expand upon collaborative efforts, consumer
involvement & empowerment programs, and workforce development, education, and training. As part of the larger community,
RAMS works toward improving & advocating for increased accessibility to resources and a more inclusive and holistic means
of treatment so that those in need can lead satisfying and productive lives. With great excitement and optimism, RAMS invites
you join us in this new decade of services to our community, and in upholding our commitment to excellence for many more
decades to come!