Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Important Announcement from RAMS Board of Directors on CEO Transition

Message from Kavoos Ghane Bassiri, President & CEO:

Dear Colleagues, Community Partners, and Friends;

I would like to inform you that I am officially resigning from my position as the President & Chief Executive Officer at Richmond Area Multi-Services, Inc. (RAMS). After a comprehensive search & recruitment process, I have been selected as the San Francisco Department of Public Health and San Francisco Health Network’s Director of Behavioral Health Services, with the City & County of San Francisco. My last day of employment with RAMS will be December 31, 2016. It has been an honor to serve this organization, all of you & our community, for over a decade.

I am so proud and humbled to have been the RAMS’ President & CEO for over 13 years. I truly appreciate your vote of confidence and I wholeheartedly cherish the privilege I was provided with to serve in this role at RAMS. I don’t take anything for granted for a moment and am so inspired by & thankful for all the experiences I have had/we have had together. During the past 13 years, RAMS has grown as an organization by leaps and bounds, offering more programs & with more diverse initiatives, serving more people, through quality, compassionate, culturally humble/competent, consumer-driven and community-based services. A lot has been accomplished, in meeting the needs of the most vulnerable, under/un-served &/or disenfranchised population in our community, and I am pleased to say that RAMS’ reputation and operations is at its strongest ever.

I look forward to staying in contact and working with you all in my new role; championing behavioral health care, strengthening our community, and ensuring the wellbeing of all San Franciscans & beyond. Respectfully, Kavoos Ghane Bassiri

Monday, November 28, 2016

Remembering David Fox

It is with deep sadness that we share the news of the recent passing of dear Mr. David Fox, Administrative Assistant at RAMS.

Mr. Fox passed away on November 22 in San Francisco. Although his battle with cancer was brief, he courageously dealt with his illness and was so appreciative of the support he received. We mourn the loss, yet we will always remember him fondly.

        Mr. David Nelson Fox
       May 7, 1960 - November 22, 2016

Mr. Fox began his employment at RAMS in April 2013. He worked as a Help Desk Technical Assistant and then Administrative Assistant at RAMS Hire-Ability Vocational Services. He was very supportive to the other staff, took his work seriously and managed his duties responsibly. He became an integral part of the RAMS’ family and our team based at Hire-Ability & at 1380 Howard Street with Behavioral Health Services. He was settled & found a home at RAMS and he will be greatly missed by his colleagues. Prior to coming to RAMS, Mr. Fox also had a successful career in graphic design work, doing design & art direction as well as production. Additionally, he was a photographer and poet, and enjoyed sharing his art & talents with others.

We extend our sincere condolences to his family, friends, and co-workers as well as those who knew & worked with him. We will miss his energetic presence and will always keep his spirit alive.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

RAMS Invites You to Join #GivingTuesday ​on November 29th

#GivingTuesday is a global day of giving, celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday. Kicking off the charitable season, it is the perfect start to your winter holiday and end-of-year charitable contributions.

Join the #GivingTuesday movement by supporting RAMS through a monetary donation, while shopping through AmazonSmile, a gift from our Amazon Wishlist​, or the power of your time through volunteering.

Annually, the mental health agency serves and outreaches to about 18,000 adults, children, youth, ​and families, and provides services in over 30 languages, including Asian languages – Cambodian, Chinese (Cantonese, Mandarin, Toishanese, Taiwanese), Farsi, Hindi, Japanese, Korean, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese – as well as Russian and Spanish. To meet the diverse community needs, RAMS offers over 30 clinical programs in over 90 sites citywide, serving the most vulnerable populations.

RAMS is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. Thank you for considering RAMS for a contribution, as the agency depends on the community's ongoing support. All contributions are tax deductible up to the extent permitted by law.

​Consider making a contribution by check or credit card:

Checks can be made payable to:

Richmond Area Multi-Services, Inc.
c/o Angela Tang, Director of Operations
639- 14th Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94118


Donate online with credit card.


Consider donating while shopping online through AmazonSmile:

RAMS is now participating in the AmazonSmile program, a simple and automatic way for Amazon customers to support RAMS every time you shop, at no additional cost to you. Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible purchases to RAMS whenever you shop on AmazonSmile! Start now by designating RAMS as your charitable organization, then using the site for all your Amazon purchases.


For more opportunities to give to RAMS, check out this page on our website.

Friday, October 21, 2016

New Director at RAMS Hire-Ability Vocational Services

It is with great pleasure that we announce the appointment of Carmen Castorena-O’Keefe as the Director of Vocational Services at RAMS Hire-Ability Vocational Services.

Ms. Castorena-O’Keefe has over 20 years of management experience, with the past 14 years being in Vocational Rehabilitation Services.  As the Program Director for Hire-Ability, Ms. Castorena-O’Keefe manages and supports a team dedicated to enhancing San Francisco City and County residents’ lives through Vocational Skills Training and Competitive Community Job Placement.

Prior to joining RAMS, Ms. Castorena-O’Keefe managed (9+ years) Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS) within the Human Services Agency, which serves San Mateo County residents with disabilities and/or barriers to employment; she also held positions within VRS as the  Marketing Manager and Job Development Specialist. Ms. Castorena-O’Keefe began her career as a Career Counselor/Placement Director and eventually Corporate Director of Career Services for Heald Colleges over 20 years ago.

Ms. Castorena-O’Keefe obtained her B.S degree from San Francisco State University. She has lived in San Francisco for over 30 years and is dedicated to serving and strengthening her community.

Please join us in welcoming and congratulating Ms. Carmen Castorena-O’Keefe to her new leadership appointment as the Director of RAMS Hire-Ability Vocational Services.

You may contact Carmen Castorena-O’Keefe at RAMS by telephone at 415-282-9675 and/or by email at

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

RAMS ​C​o-sponsoring S​eptember 29th SF District 1 Supervisor Candidates Forum!

RAMS is serving as one of the community sponsors for this upcoming San Francisco District 1 Supervisor Candidates Forum. Hope you can join us!
WHEN: ​Thursday, September 2​9, 2016,​ 6:​0​0pm - ​9:00pm
WHERE: ​Alamo Elementary School,​ 250 23rd Ave,​ SF
WHAT: ​2016 ​San Francisco ​District 1 Candidates Forum​, hosted by the Housing Rights Committee of San Francisco​
View the Facebook Event Page:

Co-Sponsoring Organizations: ​Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE), Asian Family Support Services​, ​Community Youth Center (CYC)​, ​Golden Gate Village​, ​Housing Rights Committee of San Francisco​, ​Jobs with Justice San Francisco​, ​Richmond Area Multi-Services (RAMS)​, ​Richmond District Neighborhood Center​, ​Richmond District Senior Center​, ​Richmond District YMCA​, San Francisco Tenants Union

Monday, August 22, 2016

Introducing Career Connections—A New Hire-Ability Program Designed to Serve Transition Aged Youth!

RAMS is excited to announce that our Hire-Ability division will be launching a new program, called Career Connections, in the fall of 2016. The Hire-Ability Career Connections Program will offer time-limited paid internships to transitional aged youth (TAY) ages 15-25, in order to provide healthy activities and entry-level work experience, and to help TAY consumers of behavioral health services achieve resiliency and maximize recovery.

We are looking for individuals who:
·         Are between 15 and 25 years of age
·         Are a resident of San Francisco
·         Are currently receiving services through SFDPH Behavioral Health Services (SFDPH-BHS)

Application and Course Timeline:
August 2016- Application Released
Friday, Sept. 16th--Applications Due
Monday, Sept. 19th-Friday, Sept. 30th--Notification of Application Status
Thursday, October 6th: Registration forms due for accepted applicants
Tuesday, October 11th: First workshop
January, 2017: Participants start work at their internship placement
October, 2017: Program graduation

Contact Information:
Please feel free to contact us with questions about our program. We can be reached by phone at: 415.282.9675. Our brochure and application are available for download:

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Introducing the Awardees of the 2016 Staff Awards for Outstanding Service

RAMS is delighted to announce the awardees of the fourth annual Staff Awards for Outstanding Service!

To be considered for this recognition, anyone working at RAMS may be nominated by anyone within the agency. The awardees were announced during the July 2016 RAMS all-staff meeting; each awardee received a certificate and a cash prize.

Consumer/Community Advocate Award: This award honors an individual who has been an outstanding voice for consumer empowerment by promoting client centered decision-making & change, access to information & resources, and creating relationships that foster hope, safety, and a sense of self-efficacy. S/he is mindful not only of consumer needs, but also of the needs of the larger community. S/he goes above and beyond the “call of duty”, outside her/his regular responsibilities to advocate on the behalf of the organization, consumers, their communities, and the “cause” at large.

Awardee: Frank Isidro, BA
Mr. Frank Isidro serves as a Peer Supervisor within the Division of Peer-Based Services. His nomination highlighted the ways that Frank has exemplified what it means to work with a Wellness & Recovery approach. In his role, he supports Peer Counselors to further develop the skills needed to become an integral part of the workforce at numerous behavioral health sites throughout San Francisco. Frank is an inspiration for those who work with him; he has contributed in many ways over the years to the Peer Movement and to consumer employment services in the city – as a job coach, mentor, counselor, and supervisor. Frank has also led the planning of many Consumer and Family Member Conferences, again demonstrating his dedication to the community.

Excellence in Service & Cultural Competency Award: This award honors a skilled & compassionate individual who exemplifies the values and ideals of RAMS’ mission in her/his work & interaction with staff, consumers, and the community. S/he has given superior, sustained commitment to quality services, along with unwavering dedication to serve the organization (including other staff, consumers & their communities) with professionalism, integrity, respect, and humility. This individual is not only skilled at what s/he does, but also values diversity, is able to conduct self-assessments, manage & embrace the dynamics of difference, acquire new cultural knowledge, and adapt to the cultural context of the people s/he serves. S/he has a lasting positive impact on the organization and the communities.

Awardee: Wajma Ataie, MA, MFTI
Ms. Wajma Ataie is a bilingual Mental Health Counselor at RAMS Child, Youth, and Family Services (CYF). Wajma is described as having a huge heart and an excellent advocate for the families and children she works with at her John Muir Elementary School. She is dedicated to understanding the culture and family climate a child comes from and she uses her multiple language skills to connect with families and help them feel supported. Yuka Hachiuma, Director of CYF, also shared at the all-staff meeting how Wajma has consistently demonstrated her passion and dedication to working with the underserved population of pre-dominantly African-American and Latino students and their families at the school. Her openness and curiosity extends to her interactions with her colleagues where you can often find her engrossed in a discussion about culture and learning.

Rising Star/Leadership Award: The award honors an individual that has shown exceptional promise in leadership by demonstrating their skills within the organization and our communities. S/he has shown accomplishments in improving the operations of a program, the administrative/supportive functions, and/or the lives of consumers and community we serve using an effective and efficient approach. This individual leads the way with fresh energy, strong ability, and steadfast commitment.

Awardee: Flora Chan, Psy.D.
Ms. Flora Chan is a Licensed Psychologist and serves as Clinical Manager at RAMS Adult/Older Adult Outpatient Services Clinic and the Manager of Asian Family Institute. Flora is a major figure at RAMS, and has a long history with the agency as a clinician – she completed the RAMS training program first as a trainee and then as a doctoral intern. She was then hired as a staff therapist, became a licensed psychologist, and has supervised trainees and peer counselors. In her nomination, Flora is described as an exceptional therapist who is very thoughtful, sensible, and culturally sensitive, with a strong commitment to the community, humility, resiliency, and she has an exceptional ability to connect with others. She cares significantly about providing high quality care for our clients and facilitating a nurturing work environment for staff and interns. She is an advocate, always steps up, demonstrates leadership, gets people on board, and makes change.

Congratulations to the awardees! RAMS is pleased to be able to have this annual recognition for its staff.

Click HERE to view awardees from the previous year.