Direct Support Professional, Home Places
My professional and personal life are woven together like fabric, as my husband of 49 years and I have adopted our last 5 of 14 children from a sister program of Pressley Ridge.
Professionally, I started my career at Home Places and worked with youth who carried a diagnosis is Autism. Pete, Tia, and Jenna, to name a few, profoundly influenced my life. They challenged me to “think outside the box” daily and see through their eyes. After I formed a relationship with the people I served, I quickly realized there was little on their “can’t do list”. We just lived, laughed and had great adventures together.
“Relationships are paramount.” With trust, people will always grow, be willing to risk change and have the courage to take the next step. After Home Places, I worked briefly in the Treatment Foster Care program. Avis encouraged me to come to the Family Based program. My fellow employees became a team of support. We were more than colleagues, becoming almost extended family members. We shared a strong sense of giving to help families heal the hurts, reconnect with each other and with the understanding to take the next step. Families healed and moved forward when we had sessions without phones, computers and tablets. We shared food and, yes, talked to each other. The roles within the family changed and the “bad, unheard child” became a “heard child” who needed his family to believe in him, and they did.
I am now back to working in the Home Places program with great people who support and believe in the value of each person they serve.
A special thanks to Amy, Rhonda, Angela and Marcy who directed me with respect, encouragement and support. They supported my efforts to make a positive difference in people’s lives. I was allowed to have a career filled with daily opportunities and endless possibilities helping people take the next step.
From Frozen: “We can fix this hand in hand. You don’t have to be afraid.”