Latest News & Events


RHA artists at Brazee

Members of Resident Home Association’s Soap Factory crew left work behind for a day recently to travel to the Cincinnati suburb of Oakley to view art by some of their fellow Resident Home artists that were on exhibit at the Brazee Street Studios, as part of the Studio’s community art project. Brazee is located in Oakley’s growing arts district.

Brazee - ThomasineThomasine Hill was thrilled to see her art work on exhibit. She attends art classes at the Lohrey Center in Dayton on Tuesday and notes that those classes “finally paid off” when her work went on exhibit at Brazee.

Cheryl Babb’s “My Mothers Memory” is also one of the pieces included in the exhibit.brazee 2 (2)

Creative opportunities through art is one of the many experiences provided to residents by RHA’s Adult Day program, under the direction of Amanda Wallace.


Choices welcomes Canadian trainers

Canada trainers (2)
For the management staff of Choices In Community Living, it was an inservice about Person-Centered-Planning with a very distinctive and enthusiastic Canadian flair, as they welcomed representatives from the Developmental Disabilities Association from Vancouver, British Columbia on January 22.

Pictured at the conclusion of the inservice are (l-r) Danielle White, Developmental Disabilities Association; Tom Weaver, Choices Executive Director; Andrew Kung, Developmental Disabilities Association; Teri Derry, Director, Training and Professional Development for the Ohio Provider Resource Association; and Donna Cain, Developmental Disabilities Association.

The Developmental Disabilities Association are forerunners in putting the philosophy of person-centered-planning into action in Canada. They shared an overview  of the strategies and technology they use to assure that the people they serve are at the center of the services and support they provide. Person-centered-planning is the exciting and emerging service model that is being implemented across the United States and Ohio.

Choices has been in the forefront of implementing the new model. Person-centered-planning began in Ohio communities in February, 2013 with a grant of $800,000 from the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities to fund a five-county pilot project. Choices’ Clark and Madison County programs were selected to take part in that pilot project and are off to a very successful start. Just one example is the teaming of staff with one couple in Clark County to help them identify their dream, set goals to make that dream a reality, and then work side by side as that dream became a reality when Ron and Jan signed the papers that officially made them homeowners – that dream come true – their very own home!!!!


Sharing in Huber Heights

Rotary presentation
Tom Weaver (2nd from right), Executive Director of Choices In Community Living, was a guest presenter at the January meeting of the Huber Heights Rotary Club, sharing information about Choices 30th anniversary in 2015 and an overview of programs and services.  He is pictured with Kelly Baker, Volunteer Coordinator for Partners For Community Living and Sue Gunnell, Rotary President and Mark Davis, Rotary President-Elect. Tom shared the deep ties that Choices and Partners has in the Huber community, including three homes and our exemplary Adult Day program at the Huber YMCA. Choices is also a member of the Huber Heights Chamber of Commerce.

Kelly shared information about our shared volunteer program and upcoming events, including our March 13th Fish Fry at the Huber Heights Athletic Foundation. Tickets are now available for the Fish Fry and can be purchased by going to our Events button and going to Donate.

For more information about our Fish Fry, please contact Kelly at 937-278-0791.


When the weather outside is frightful

Fill your days with good food, even better companionship and a variety of great activities and who has time to even think about what the weather is doing outside? The  34 people who participated in Resident Home Association’s Adult Day Program the last week of 2014 were far too busy to care about the winter cold.

On Monday, December 29 it was a warm and delicious lunch at Olive Garden (a favorite community dining spot for most of the participants), followed by a movie, while a second group at the RHA office focused on their performing skills and creative side by working on a music video. The center common area at the RHA office is large and welcoming, complete with a full kitchen where everyone joins together to come up with menu ideas and then make delicious home-made lunches. The wonderful smells from cooking fill the office and make it seem more like home than an office. It’s the perfect setting for so many of the activities and classes developed by participants, with support from staff.

It may have been cold outside, but Amanda focused all of her attention on developing her candy makings skills.

It may have been cold outside, but Amanda Adams focused all of her attention on developing her candy making skills.

Tuesday found Day Program Supervisor Amanda Wallace leading a group in making candy, followed by a chili lunch. The candy makers were joined for lunch by the music video group. Wednesday morning found the ladies of our Joyceann home making muffins, followed by their always fun and entertaining New Year’s Eve luncheon. Another group celebrated by going to see the Harlem Globetrotters in the afternoon.

It was a craft class on Thursday as Amanda led participants in making snow globes and sock snowmen in the morning, followed by hot soup for lunch, where they were joined by the members of the music video group led by Vicki Servais. Rounding out the busy week was an art class that included making Pop Up art that will be displayed later in January at the Brazee Street Studios in Cincinnati. The music video group joined in the creative process, which also included making Perspective Snowman paintings, followed by hot chicken soup for lunch.

It was unanimous by all who participated that there couldn’t have been a better way to spend the last days of 2014 and welcome in 2015, with the promise of many more shared days and weeks to come!

Working and learning together may just be the best thing about our Adult Day Services activities. Staff member Nathan works with Jeanne as she discovers some of the secrets in turning melted chocolate into candy.

Working and learning together may just be the best thing about our Adult Day Services activities. Staff member Nathan Stevens works with Jeanne Russell as she discovers some of the secrets in turning melted chocolate into candy.


For Mike Wood the best snowman is not one you make out in the cold but the one you create inside where it is warm and the smell of hot chicken soup fills the air.

For Mike Wood the best snowman is not one you make out in the cold but the one you create inside where it is warm and the smell of hot chicken soup fills the air.



We have a Jingle Bucks winner!!!!

Thank you to everyone who joined us this year for our 2014 Jingle Bucks. In our drawing held on December 12, Donald Russell of Plainview, Texas became our most recent Jingle Bucks winner.

Congratulations to Donald! We know it will be a happy holiday season for him, as it will be for all of those served by Resident Home Association and Choices In Community Living who benefit from the proceeds of Jingle Bucks.

Look ahead and join us for Jingle Bucks 2015. Contact us and let us know if you would like to be added to our Jingle Bucks mailing list or if you have family or friends who would like to receive our information.


Art Sponsors Announced

Partners For Community Living and Toward Independence gratefully acknowledge sponsorship support for our 8th annual Art & Soul juried art exhibit, including the Butler, Greene, Hamilton, Montgomery and Warren County Boards of Developmental Disabilities and Sketches Framing Shop.

Our Exhibit will be held in a new location this year at Toward Independence, 81 East Main Street in Xenia.

Exhibit dates are April 14 – April 25, with the opening reception to be held on Friday, April 17, from 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. The reception is open to the public at no charge.

Deadline for artists’ entries is February 5. Artists with developmental disabilities in a 22-county region in and around Dayton are encouraged to submit up to two entries per artist. The top 40 artists will be named by a panel of three professional artists from our region.

For more information, please call Beth at 937-376-3996.

To become an art patron for the 2015 Exhibit, please go to the Donate button and enter your $100 donation. Remember – Art & Soul is funded in full by sponsorships and donations. Donations are tax-deductible.


Be a part of our 10 and 10,000

They are two very important numbers for Partners For Community Living as 2014 comes to an end. Ten is our goal for the number of new donors who will join us in saying yes during our 2015 Community Campaign. Maybe you have attended one of our events this past year or read a story that touched your heart in one of our newsletters. Maybe you watched one of our DATV programs and heard about some of the things that happened during the year. Maybe you volunteered. Maybe you thought for a moment about the people we serve and the lives they live in our community today and it made you feel good knowing that people have homes where they are comfortable and safe, that they have staff who are more than staff – they are family. Maybe you looked at someone like Bill when he was inducted into the Hall of Fame and were touched by how much he cares about others, about how strong his faith is, how he has always wanted to be a minister, not realizing that the way he lives his life in service to others is his ministry. Maybe you heard that Ron and Jan finally got their dream home, that Margie made everyone cry when she sang, that people got new shoes and new clothes and new furniture and new vans. Maybe as you think of all these things this holiday season you just might consider taking that one important step to become one of our ten new donors during our community campaign!

That other number, $10,000, is the goal we have set to make good things happen for people served by Choices In Community Living and Resident Home Association in the new year. There are those of you who say yes every year when we ask for our end of the year donations. You say yes when there is a need for funds in our Wish Lists. You say yes to attending our Fish Fry or supporting our Bowl-A-Thon. Every time you say yes you inspire us to do more and to do better, to be the kind of agencies and people that those we serve deserve, that you, our donors, deserve. You trust that we will honor you in the way we use your donations. We thank you for that trust. We thank you for that support. We thank you for helping us set that big $10,000 goal and for helping us meet it!

All donations received by December 31 are tax-deductible for 2014. Your donation stays in our community and serves people in our community – maybe someone you know, someone who lives in your neighborhood.  You can add to the quality of their lives. Your donation does not take the place of federal, state or local funding sources. It is used to meet needs when there are no other funds available.

To paraphrase The Grinch, “What if Christmas doesn’t come from a store? What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more!”

May this season be one of those times that means so much more to you!




Vivienne first recipient of John Pratt Legacy Award

A very important person for Vivienne during her awards presentation was Roger, the love of her life and her husband of more than 60 years.

A very important person for Vivienne during her awards presentation was Roger, the love of her life and her husband of more than 60 years.

The tears and sense of gratitude were overflowing on November 13 when family, friends and colleagues came together to honor decades of service to the community by Vivienne Himmell. Partners For Community Living presented Vivienne its first annual John W. Pratt Legacy Award. The Award honors an individual or group whose long-time service, advocacy and leadership follow the example of John W. Pratt, one of the founders of both Resident Home Association and Choices In Community Living and chair of Partners For Community Living’s Endowment Fund at the time of his death.

During the ceremonies, Vivienne was presented a proclamation from the Montgomery County Commission for her service on the Human Services Levy Council. She was also recognized for decades long volunteer service to the League of Women Voters, as well as her advocacy and support of people with developmental disabilities. Three of John’s daughters, Ann Schulte, Cathy Payne, Mary Ann Shultz helped make the presentations on behalf of their father and family. John’s fourth daughter, Susan, lives in a Resident Home Association home.

Vivienne worked for more than two decades as a social worker and case manager for what was then the Montgomery County Board of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities. After her retirement in 1998, she became a board member for the Resident Home Association, where she still serves in a volunteer capacity. She is also a very active member of Partners Joint Development Committee.

Vivienne was presented a scrapbook and shadow box filled with letters, notes and cards from her friends from throughout the community. As her husband and one of her three daughters sat with her, all were moved to tears as the ceremonies came to an end with the beautiful performance of Margie Little, who is supported by Choices In Clark County by Choices In Community Living. Margie sang Debbie Boone’s You Light Up My Life and dedicated it to Vivienne and all those in the room who have given so much of their lives in service to others and their community.

The ceremonies also served as the official kickoff for Partners 2015 Community Campaign, with a  goal to raise $10,000 in donations.  Donations in honor of Vivienne, in honor and memory of John Pratt, or to honor or remember someone special in your life can be made on our secure website, or may be forwarded to 1651 Needmore Road, Dayton OH 45414.


Donna, the Editor

donnaWe congratulate Donna Lawson on being named  the new editor of the OADSP E-flash newsletter (Ohio Alliance of Direct Support Professionals.)  Just over two years ago Donna joined the Resident Home Association team as a Direct Support Professional (DSP.) Not only has she excelled at Resident Home and assumed the critical leadership role of Home Manager for our Kenbrook Home, she is establishing herself at the state level as a mentor and advocate for other DSPs.

She is also an active member of the DSP Council and has made presentations this year at both the Ohio Provider Resource Association state conference and the Synergy Conferences.

Congratulations to Donna and thank you for your support of Direct Support Professionals at Resident Home, Choices In Community Living and across Ohio!


A family visit

Being with family is what the holidays are all about, one of the reasons we have to give thanks. The ladies at Resident Home’s Springmill Home have been missing a member of their family since she retired in May. Wanda Cooley had been Home Manager at the home for 15 years. She has worked with and been a member of the family for some of the ladies for almost 25 years. Three of the ladies, Susan, Loretta and Debbie had the chance to rekindle family ties on November 7.

Wanda Cooley and Susan PrattSusan, pictured with Wanda, helped Debbie and Loretta arrange a coffee date with Wanda. Everyone was so happy to see each other and what might have been a short meeting just to say hello turned into a time of everyone talking at once, trying to catch up with everything that happened over the summer and many hugs. There were even some moments when tears were almost shed, they were so happy to be together again.

It was  such a good time that there are plans for Wanda to stop by the home to help decorate the Christmas tree. That family bond has been a hallmark of every Thanksgiving, holiday and every day since Resident Home was founded in 1966.

May that spirit of family that abounds at Springmill and throughout our Resident Home and Choices  In Community Living homes be present in your home as we celebrate the holidays and, most joyfully, celebrate family!
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