Advocating for James

Roxanne, a Care Coordinator at our company, has worked with James for almost 17 years. When she first met him, James had a behavior plan with many restrictions. He could not use a phone independently or access his bank account numbers. He was not allowed to have any home or community alone time. He needed support staff with him on all outings.

“James couldn’t see himself beyond his restrictions,” says Roxanne. “He had no goals for his life.”

Roxanne helped James return to a workshop he previously attended, advocating for his inclusion even when staff were skeptical. She then worked with James and his mother to find a new psychiatrist and counselor for him. This better met his mental health needs.

Soon afterward, Roxanne enrolled James in a day habilitation program with more opportunities. The coordinator of that program took a chance on James, since he required extra supervision. Roxanne built a strong working relationship with the coordinator, and the chance she gave James was the change he needed.

Eventually, James joined a self-advocacy group. He gave speeches at advocacy events and even received an award at an advocacy conference! He was beginning to develop goals for his life.

James hoped to get home and community alone time, with the ultimate goal of one day having a job in the community. He knew he wanted to get rid of all his restrictions. Roxanne cooperated with James and his team to help him reach his goals in steps. She continued to support James on her caseload after her transfer to Person Centered Services.

On August 20th of this year, during a Life Plan review, the last restrictions were removed from James’s behavior plan. His team fully supported looking into an employment program for him. This means James is well on his way to fulfilling his dreams!

“James taught me a valuable lesson,” says Roxanne. “I had to learn to see past the evaluations and rights restrictions. I had to get to know who he was and build a trusting foundation. I had to empower James, but before I could do that I needed to be fully vested in his journey.”

James now has freedom at his home and in his community. During the COVID-19 crisis, when he was home with four other housemates, James held up well, showing how much he has grown and changed!

“My life’s gotten better,” James says. “I look at where I’m at now, how much I’ve overcome. I’ve jumped over the hurdles.”

James currently loves riding his bike and is excited to explore possible job opportunities. He is grateful for the support he has received from Person Centered Services. “Roxanne helps get my needs met,” he says.

“James is an amazing man who has realized his potential in steps and now has real goals,” Roxanne says. “I am proud of James. I am grateful for what he taught me about seeing beyond what is on paper. He has made me a better person. I look forward to supporting him through the rest of his journey and I am excited to see where he will go next!”

Person Centered Services is dedicated to helping people like James reach their potential!