As the Pickaway County Board for the Developmentally Disabled celebrates diverse abilities and inclusion in our community, it is important to take a step back and recognize the vital people who are on the frontlines each day ensuring that inclusion is interwoven into people’s lives.

The staff and board members of the Pickaway County Board for the Developmentally Disabled would like to celebrate and honor our Direct Support Professionals, not only this week of national appreciation, but every day.

What makes Direct Support Professionals so very important? A Direct Support Professional (DSP) is someone who works directly with people who have intellectual or developmental disabilities. DSPs aim to assist people in realizing their full potential. They help people become integrated and engaged in their community.

In the past, DSPs were trained as caregivers. But over the past few decades, the needs of those being served changed. Therefore, the roles of DSPs began to change. Now, DSPs take on different aspects and roles apart from caregiving. It is no longer about doing things for people. It is about helping them learn how to do things for themselves.

Just as we need to embrace authentic inclusion and relationships in our community, we need to recognize the people who lend us all the opportunity to learn how to support and support all of our friends and neighbors. Our Direct Support Professionals are passionate about helping others thrive and live their best lives.

Thank you DSP’s for being such caring and inclusive friends and partners!

If you would like to learn more on how to become a Direct Support Professional, please contact the Pickaway County Board for the Developmentally Disabled at 740-477-3353.

Written and submitted by Heather Foll, Community Connections Coordinator, Pickaway County DD Board.

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