Our Mission: Create Opportunities for People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and their Families to Participate Fully in the Community
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Seeing the Remarkable Roles of DSPs April 6, 2021

Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) act as advocates, coaches, friends and more
in their support for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

DSPs were honored at the March IDD Awareness Day Lunch as part of Alliance Colorado’s annual DSP of the Year Award. DDRC is proud of our award nominees who were recognized that day; Elizabeth (Liz) Polivka, Counselor, and Andrea Samuelson, Employment Specialist.

Liz works in our A Better Choice supporting individuals receiving Supported Living Services and previously worked with our Quality Living Options, DDRC’s residential services. Her special care is shown in her support of a woman with a terminal illness, helping the woman transition from her condominium, to hospice, to a nursing home, and even changing nursing homes during the pandemic! Liz advocated for the woman’s comfort, provided her reassurance, helped see that the moves went smoothly, kept cherished items at hand, and helped other people see the woman’s wonderful individuality.

Andrea promotes person-centered services and Employment First practices and encourages people to stretch beyond what they think is possible. Her approach with one career seeker demonstrates the spirit of all her work. Andrea received input that this person wanted to be a dishwasher but after some time wondered if this really was what he wanted. Andrea used a creative and interactive approach to dig deeper into identifying his genuine interests. Together, they realized his passion is for reading and books, and she is now helping him explore positions closer to his passions, exemplifying her commitment to foster the most person-centered experience possible.  

We are grateful for and proud of these two DSPs and we thank all our DDRC DSPs for their awesome work.