United Cerebral Palsy staff says thanks

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT)-The Rotary Park at Craighead Forest Park was filled with people on Friday.

An appreciation day was held for United Cerebral Palsy staff and clients.

People were invited to come out and enjoy some good company, food and games.

Vicki Romine, ACS Coordinator for the Northeast Region for the United Cerebral Palsy, says they held the event to say thank you to everyone.

"This is in appreciation for the staff and the clients that UCP serves in the Northeast Region," Romine said. "We wanted to let them know that we appreciate them because they do have choices and options and there's a lot of providers. So, we appreciate that they've chosen UCP and it provides us with an opportunity to show the staff how much we appreciate all their hard work and commitment that they give to the individuals in Northeast Arkansas."

Romine says staff with UCP work hard to help those with disabilities live a fuller life.

"We are a waiver provider," Romine said. "It's a Medicaid waiver program for people with developmental disabilities to give them an option so they are not forced with a nursing home or other institution place. We provide a support of living staff to assist them with self care and independent living, self direction, case management services, transportation if needed. Waiver is a wonderful thing. It does provide options for people."

Romine says UCP works to help those with developmental disabilities gain their independence.

"We have sixty young men who reside in our transition homes," Romine said. "On the property of JHDC. It's a transition to assist people out of institutions and into joint community living. We've got several folks that live in their own apartments. We've got individuals that live with staff members."

Romine says independence is important.

"Knowing that you have choices as much as anything," Romine said. "A lot of people don't understand that they do have a choice. So, we try to teach that people do have choices and honor those choices to the best of our ability."

Romine says holding events like the one at Craighead Forest Park are important.

People need to know their appreciated.

"I think it's important because it lets the people that we serve know that we do care about them," Romine said. "It's not just a job to us and we want them to have fun. We want our staff to enjoy the day and have an opportunity to feel special."

For more information about the United Cerebral Palsy, log onto this website.

Copyright 2012 KAIT. All rights reserved.