When I look back on 2014, I will think of it as a year of growth. We opened a new, seven person apartment building in the spring. By the end of the calendar year, 17 additional people were offered Supported Living (SLS) resources. By March 2015, eleven new people were enrolled in our SLS program with three more in process. In the Children’s Extensive Support Waiver, we have enrolled two new children for a total of four. While these numbers are relatively small, they represent significant growth in our program.
We have achieved many important things:
- Seventy-two employees have been trained in Person Centered Thinking.
- We are maintaining financial sustainability by limiting growth in agency expenses and increasing revenue.
- We developed systems to maximize our use of the funding hierarchy for Early Intervention services.
- Individuals are being served in an SLS model using Routt County mill levy funds.
- Three individuals were enrolled in our Medicaid comprehensive services program.
- Four individuals are enrolled in CES. Three more are approved and one in process. This represents 300% growth for us.
- We have 20 one to one mentors for the adults in our programs. These partnerships do a variety of things: attend fundraisers for other non-profits, go skiing, go out for coffee, go for walks, go out for meals, attend social media classes, play billiards, attend local sporting events, go to community concerts, and go to local restaurants for Happy Hour.
- We held our third annual Pick a Dish event in Moffat County in April. Interested individuals in Horizons’ adult programs were paired with chefs from local restaurants. Together they prepared a dish to share at the event. About 200 people attended and voted on their favorites. The primary goal of the event was to develop relationships between our chefs and the restaurant chefs that would result in employment. No job offers yet…
- Tommy Larson and Sylvia McFeaters were two of the five finalists for the Direct Support Professional of the Year award by Alliance at Awareness Day at the Capitol.
- All Adult Service Coordinators have been trained by the Labor Relations Board to conduct investigations.
We have maintained many important things:
- The president of the board of directors is a liaison between the Grand County Advisory Board and Horizons’ board.
- We are maintaining our collaborations with Aging Well, the Northwest Colorado Center for Independence, the Yampa Valley Autism Program, Steamboat Adaptive Recreation Services (STARS), and the Council on Aging.
- We work closely with Behavior Services of the Rockies and with Mindsprings Health.
- We have maintained a high level of supported employment in Routt County.
Our priorities for 2015 include:
- Identifying needed growth in infrastructure in response to an additional 15 SLS resources, and growth in CES and comprehensive programs.
- Identifying staff to become Person Centered thinking trainers.
- Upgrading our vehicles with $81,400 in funding from the Colorado Department of Transportation.
- Updating and/or creating policies and procedures.
- Improving our system for monitoring agency performance.
- Defining our relationship with the local autism program.
- Continuing to monitor our budget to ensure that we are limiting growth in expenses and maximizing revenue.
- Advocating for choice in Case Management to include Horizons CMs.
- Advocating for a solution to CFCM that preserves our mill levy.
- Celebrating our 40th anniversary! We are planning 1970’s dance parties in Steamboat and in Craig.
Susan Mizen, Executive Director