Westbrook plans events for development disabilities month

PARKERSBURG – Westbrook Health Services and organizations statewide and across the nation devoted to serving individuals with developmental disabilities are planning special events in March for Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month 2014.

The theme of the month is “Ability at Work” and is intended to raise public awareness of the abilities people have regardless of disability.

“This is a time when our organization focuses on the public to better understand the individuals we serve,” said Judy Whited, program coordinator-employment specialist at Westbrook.

Activities planned for March include Westbrook Health Services I/DD open house 5-7 p.m. March 27 at 3307 Emerson Ave. Representatives will be available to discuss services.

Westbrook received a grant through the state for the new Work Options-Customized Employment Program targeted toward people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and traumatic brain injuries 18 years and older, she said.

Customized Employment utilizes a team-approach to work one-on-one with each job seeker, she said. The team helps individuals determine personal career goals and assists them in achieving those goals.

The program is new, yet is already seeing a positive impact on the lives of the people it serves, she said. The program works with the state Division of Rehabilitation Services.

Westbrook is a community rehabilitation provider and can provide services for anyone, however through the grant Westbrook is required to serve at least 10 individuals with an intellectual and developmental disability or a traumatic brain injury diagnosis.