Our Guiding Principles
1. We assist people with disabilities to live their own lives.
We believe that everyone, including people with disabilities, has a right to unobstructed access to his or her own life. We assist people with disabilities to be skilled at making decisions, acting on decisions, and understanding repercussions. We extend authority, power, and resources to the individual in ways that enable them to control their own destiny. We provide services that fit the age, personality, culture, habits, and lifestyles of the individual reflecting normal life rhythms and routines in a way that honors a positive image of the person at all times.
2. We assist people to be competent decisions-makers.
We believe that everyone, including people with disabilities, has the right to make his or her own choices about issues that affect his or her own personal life. We will respect the informed decisions people make about their own lives even if we do not agree. We believe that understanding an individual's rights and needs are essential to accomplishing our mission.
3. We connect people's lives to the community in which they live.
Community interaction is a central need to a person's life. We work for universal physical accessibility in which people can get in to and move about in the place they have a right to be as a citizen of a community. We take it as part of our job to assist people in pursuing acquaintances, friendships, and romantic relationships with others in the community as healthy interaction. We support only living and working situations that are respected and valued by the general community, including fair wages, freedom from harassment, freedom from pity, and expression of appreciation. We will use existing resources from the community whenever possible before utilizing any "special" service designed specifically for people with disabilities.
4. We support the right of voluntary association.
In the work we do, we will at all times make it possible for people to choose with whom they spend free time, choose with whom they live, and choose whole will or will not be invited to assist them, provide services for them, or control their personal resources.
5. We provide unique and individual services.
We believe that people should not be segregated into activities not available to the general public - or - assigned by others to a congregate setting. We assist people with disabilities to make their own personal life choices including those that are not traditional, or particularly "easy". We recognize that a set of choices that includes only congregate settings is not appropriate for any life choice. - support group living, working, or leisure situations only if: (1) the person desires such a setting, (2) the person has complete control over with whom she/he will share this setting, (3) the person has complete freedom to choose where in the community this setting will be, and (4) such a setting is one that is available to all in the community.
6. We teach people how to have control over their own personal resources.
Everyone, including people with disabilities has the right to determine how his/her personal resources will be spent or used. People also have the right to have their best interest’s dictate how others will use their funds when assistance is necessary. We will respect and encourage these rights at all times and will spend people’s money only for supports, services, and goods that are delivered; activities/situations that will be life enhancing; activities/situations that increase the ability of the person to participate in community settings for work, residence, leisure, or other activities involving community connection.
7. We provide only services that will benefit people’s physical, emotional, spiritual, and reputational well being.
The services we provide for people with disabilities do no harm to the individual, do not feel demeaning to the individual, and do not create a negative or devalued image of the person to others in the community. The services will be provided until they are deemed no longer necessary.
8. We do whatever it takes to help people reach their goals.
We involve others beyond human service professionals. We place no limits, other than what is legally and morally acceptable, on what a person proposes as a goal or the methods we use to meet those goals. We believe that every single person who works for, or receives services from this agency is in a process of growing, developing skills, making choices, and becoming more interconnected with the community. We do not place limits on what a person is capable of accomplishing if he/she is motivated to do so. We believe public understanding of the rights and needs of individuals with developmental disabilities is essential to the accomplishment of our mission.