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DSP Recognition Week

The most important job in agencies that provide service for people with disabilities is not Directors of Departments, Executives, HR, and or Finance; although administrative staff does provide an important role, the DSP (Direct Support Professional) has the most important role. When asking a few people what role does a DSP participate in one’s life; there is not just one answer.

Sure a DSP helps assist individuals with meals, medications, doctor’s appointments, finances, jobs, achieving IHP Goals, and daily life routines. A DSP helps assist with the basic needs of service recipient. What about the need for human interactions, having a friend in some cases a family, providing loving and caring environment, building trust, confidence, showing individual’s dignity, respect and integrity, providing personal care, seeing people with disabilities at their most vulnerable state; even the service recipient with the toughest exterior. As simple as making a meal; knowing what the individual’s favorite dish or what not to make. DSP learns how to bring out a smile and laughter, when someone is having a tough day or knows when to give that person space. DSP knows what an individual enjoy during recreational time, maybe as simple as watching a TV show or going to a sports event or shopping. DSP knows how important it is for an individual to make their own choices as much as possible; but when a staff needs to help make a choice for a person, they know their likes and dislikes. DSP knows an individual just as they would know their own family. This is very evident when the individual favorite staff comes in to work a shift and the biggest smile appears on an individual’s face with such excitement. The trust that has been built from scratch you can see in both set of eyes (Staff and Service Recipient) just like old friends. The most important role here is, being that person that at any given time brings joy and gladness to the lives of service recipients and occasionally filling the void of family contact in certain particular instances and the instant gratification that comes along with that.

When asking a DSP what the most important aspect of their job is…they don’t say money or earning a paycheck…they say providing a caring compassionate environment, treating individual with respect and decency… “The individual’s we support, they are our extended family”. This is such gratitude, integrity and dignity that DSP demonstrate on a daily basis. The DSP is the heart of an agency. Here are some examples:

Sakree Tillman joined the Residential program as the Manager of Supported Living Program (SLP) July 23, 2014. As soon as taking up the leadership role as the manager of the SLP program, she was quick to assist an individual in the program to obtain employment. This individual has been out of work for almost two years. In addition, Sakree was able to gain the trust and respect from the individuals after losing staff members that were important to them. As a result, another individual served now allow staff to participate in receiving reports from doctors (going into the room with them). Sakree took the time to match staff and persons-served to help create person-centered supports, Sakree has open communication with family members and guardians. In addition, Sakree is a team player and will step in and provide coverage whenever there is a last minute call out. Sakree continues to ensure his individuals are receiving best quality of life.

The Teacher Assistants at the Developmental Daycare and Preschool at the Jerry Davis Center for Children and Families exhibit amazing strength and flexibility! They are able to be supportive and encouraging to the children in one moment, distract and re-direct the next moment, and sing songs and play games the next. Their energy is solely directed at the children and ensuring their growth and development.

Jess Peyser is the Night Director at Camp Jotoni. During her time at camp, she worked with campers to adapt the programs so all campers, regardless of ability, were able to participate and enjoy themselves, while leading staff and campers at the same time. Often ‘sleepover’ camp is the first away from home experience for our campers, and Jess made sure all of our campers where comfortable and had a great camp experience.
Matt Pribula gave 110% throughout the entire summer. He volunteered to work with campers who exhibited challenging behaviors and was very successful in ensuring those campers had a quality camp experience.

Crystal Condit recently became the Respite Coordinator for the Saturday Respite Program. She has shown great initiative in coordinating the program. She works closely with families to ensure open communication and engages the students in activities that meet each child’s unique needs.

Shavonne Stick starts each day with an idea of how best to keep person served happy while making a difference. This year she surveyed the consumers looking into their interests for community outings and was able to plan and accommodate day trips. The day trips were to Keansburg Beach and amusement park, 4-H fair, afternoon coffee breaks, and she held a create your own sundae while at work activity. Shavonne displays a very high level of care when interacting with ALL consumers served within our agency. She consistently goes above and beyond the requirements of her position as long as the consumer’s interest is represented.

By |2016-11-03T10:15:11+00:00September 11th, 2014|Categories: Bev Eschbach's Posts|Tags: , |Comments Off on DSP Recognition Week

IHP Goals

I hope everyone has been enjoying their summer. The Arc of Somerset has been working towards becoming paperless.  Currently all health tracking ( doctors appointments, seizures, vitals, etc.) , finances (program and service recipients), in house UIR and reportable UIR are all being tracked in Therap.  Now we are happy to announce  for all  IHP Goals for each Service Recipient is now being tracked in ISP Data. We are approaching 300 Service Recipients within both Departments of Residential and Employment Services that we provide support services for. This has been a great success!!  Managers are amazed with how easy the DDD Monthly tracking reports have become.   We are looking forward to using Emars for all of our programs.

By |2016-11-03T10:15:12+00:00August 13th, 2014|Categories: Bev Eschbach's Posts|Tags: |Comments Off on IHP Goals

My first blog

Picture of The Arc of Somerset County’s Family Support ProgramPicture of Family Support ProgramThe Arc of Somerset County’s Family Support Program assists individual with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families in their effort to remain together in their homes and communities. The home is typically the best environment for the individual so Family support is often defined as “whatever it takes” to help an individual stay in his/her natural home. Family involvement and empowerment are key in determining the needs of the individual or family. The Family support Coordinator works with the family to determine needs and assist with obtaining quality of life for the families and the child with a disability. Raising a child with intellectual and development disabilities can challenge a family’s ability to cope; and parents, siblings, caregivers and friends often feel overwhelmed. As individuals with disabilities have the best opportunity to grow and develop within a loving family environment, the Family Support Program is designed to keep families together.

Recently The Family Support program held their fifth annual Caring for Mothers and Others Day on May 5th 2012. Mothers and care givers enjoyed a full day of pampering and activities, including Zumba, beading, crafting, nutrition seminars and spirit counseling. The keynote speaker was Paula Marasco, Chairwoman of the Somerset county Commission on the Status of Women reflected on her experience of babysitting a child with special needs, Marasco remarked how the child influenced and continues to influence her outlook on life. She learned a new kind of love from the child who could not say her name. By sharing her story, Marasco was truly honoring the caregivers in attendance, applauding their compassion and never ending care and support for their loved one with a disability. The Arc of Somerset provided Respite Care for the children at the event so the caregivers could have a piece of mind. There were 42 venders, 10 Respite staff, 43 family members and 19 children.

Our heartfelt thanks to all our parents for your time, effort and love in providing for the needs of your children.

By |2016-11-03T10:15:40+00:00June 12th, 2012|Categories: Bev Eschbach's Posts|Tags: |Comments Off on My first blog