The birthday cake brought a smile to Richard’s face but what made him really happy was being surrounded by his Choices family as they shared his 88th birthday with him. He is pictured with his Program Administrator Diann Reid, his Program Director Danette Addison, and Program Administrator Amy Jewsikow (front.) Their most important titles for Richard, however, have nothing to do with their jobs at Choices. It has everything to do with their support of him. They are first and foremost his family and his friends.
Richard is a happy, content and friendly man, always quick to greet those he has known for a long time and those he just meets with a warm hello or have a great day or have a great weekend. All of his birthdays were not as happy as the one he just celebrated. For many years, a young Richard lived ‘out of sight and out of mind’ in one of Ohio’s state institutions, the Gallipolis Institution. He had a difficult transition when he came back to Dayton from Gallipolis, a transition where he first met Danette, who guided him through some of those very difficult times, as Diann guides him through the joys and challenges of his life today as one of our most cherished senior citizens.
Sometimes it’s hard to tell someone just all that we do at Choices, with so many activities and programs, so many rules and policies, just what is our mission, just what is a Direct Support Professional or Program Administrator and all those other things. But then sometimes it’s just so easy. We just say look at our wonderful Richard and see what it looks like to be 88 and to be respected, honored and loved for who you are. That’s what we do and who we are!