May 3, 2023

Newly Renamed Member Advisory Board Focuses on Empowering People with Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities

The board includes active members from throughout the 18 county region in New York covered by Person Centered Services.

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BUFFALO, NY (May 3, 2023) – The Person Centered Services Member Advisory Board (MAB) has refocused to give a greater voice to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

The board, which offers feedback and guidance on Care Coordination provided by Person Centered Services, recently made a name change from the Family, Individual, and Caregiver Advisory Board (FICAB) to the Member Advisory Board (MAB).

Board member and self-advocate BJ Stasio commented on the change:  “You’re probably wondering the reason ‘Member’ is so important.  ‘Member’ gives us a feeling of belonging and inclusion.  Person Centered Services should always be leading the way in creating a true inclusive mindset and supporting system change.  The words we use set a tone for how we do business.  To me, Person Centered Services feels like family, so let’s create system change one word or phrase at a time.  Change only happens if you live up to your organization’s name: Person Centered Services.”

Alan Venesky, the Director of Community and Provider Relations at Person Centered Services spoke about the change as well.  “The members of our former Family, Individual, and Caregiver Advisory Board FICAB have described Person Centered Services as ‘feeling like family.’  With this, they’ve suggested that a family is made up of members, and that implies a sense of belonging.”

MAB members are active advocates in their communities.  Many serve on city, county, or statewide advisory boards in 18 counties across New York.  Others are volunteers for various community-based or disability provider organizations’ boards.  The board includes members with intellectual and developmental disabilities and provides input to the Care Coordinators at Person Centered Services, who connect people to the resources and opportunities they need to thrive. Click here to view the full list of MAB members.

The MAB evaluates and offers feedback on quality management and marketing plans at Person Centered Services.  Members help the organization continue to focus on their mission.  Most recently, the MAB has encouraged employees to discuss the film Crip Camp.  This is a film that highlights the beginning of the disability rights movement and is very important to many of the members.  The MAB has also helped to create a subcommittee which focuses on action regarding advocacy issues.

As a Care Coordination Organization, Person Centered Services’ mission is to connect people to the care, support and opportunities that maximize their quality of life.  Care Coordinators work closely with experienced partners throughout the region to help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities reach their potential.

Person Centered Services provides Care Coordination for over 17,000 people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, reaching throughout the Western New York, Finger Lakes, and Southern Tier regions.

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