Are you looking for an awesome weekend job where you get to make a difference every day?
If so, UCP might have the perfect job for you! We’re seeking a Weekend Supported Living Specialist who will help adults who experience developmental disabilities to live independently in their own houses and apartments.
Find out more here.
We’ve been asking UCP employees what they love most about UCP.
Here’s what Rachel, one of our Assistant Team Leaders has to say… “Not to sound super corny, but I really admire my coworkers. I’ve met some of the most dedicated, compassionate, patient people through my work here. I also love how UCP encourages growth and self-improvement. Finally, I really love helping people explore their interests and participate in the things they enjoy. My very first day, I helped the woman I was supporting into her adaptive bike. As soon as she got pedaling, her face lit up. She was just beaming.”
Please join us in welcoming John Goff, UCP’s new Community Services Director. As Community Services Director, John will oversee UCP's supported living and community inclusion ("Choices") services.
John came to us from the east coast, where he served as the Executive Director of a large non-profit that supports adults with disabilities through residential, recreational, and individualized supported employment services. Prior to his work on the east coast, John spent 10 years in Oregon, where he served adults and youth with disabilities in different capacities.
John first became interested in disability issues as a teenager while volunteering at a UCP affiliate in New York. He has dedicated his career to empowering people with disabilities ever since.
John is committed to the mission and values of UCP, and is very excited to have returned to the Northwest community. In his free time, he enjoys exploring Oregon’s outdoor spaces with his wife and two sons, and rock climbing whenever he gets the chance.
UCP believes that everyone has the right to live in their own house or apartment, so we provide supported living services to over eighty adults who experience disabilities. Meet one of the people we support: Karen.
Karen loves her independence and she loves living in her own apartment. But she finds it tough to make plans or cook meals, and she becomes disoriented easily. So she is partnering with UCP's employees to learn new skills to increase her independence. She's also learning to make and follow a weekly schedule.
Another of Karen's big goals is to make new friends in her apartment building--a tricky task for her, since she is naturally shy. With a little encouragement from UCP, Karen found the courage to begin attending a weekly exercise class that takes place in her apartment building. At first, Karen relied on her staff to facilitate her interactions at the class, but as time went on Karen took the lead, and now she has several friends.
Her new-found confidence is also helping her feel comfortable leaving the apartment building. Once upon a time, Karen was afraid to leave the building--she was worried that someone might take it away if she said or did the wrong thing. Today, Karen ventures out all the time. She's making new friends and learning new skills and loving her life.
UCP supports adult with disabilities so that they can live in their own houses and apartments. One of the things our staff do in this program is to support people to take trips and vacations.
Recently, a person we support (Brenda) and her Personal Assistant (Margaret) took an exciting trip.
Here is what Margaret has to say about their adventures:
It was around Mother’s Day that Brenda got the idea to take a trip to Central Oregon. She said she’d like to visit Madras, Bend, and Sisters. Maybe even Prineville.
In early June we loaded up the Suburu and headed east on Highway 26. We decided to listen to some 80’s music with lots of keyboards. “Keyboards, keyboards, keyboards!” Brenda exclaimed. (Brenda has been known to rock out on the keyboards pretty hard, given the opportunity.)
Our first stop was in Sandy, where we perused a thrift shop run by friendly older folks. Brenda purchased some videos. Then we went to the Chamber of Commerce, where Brenda gathered pamphlets and local newspapers, two things that Brenda loves to collect. Next we stopped at the Ranger Station and took Brenda’s picture with Smokey.
Nearby, an Information Center beckoned. We found it to be full of maps and more pamphlets. We hit the road once more, crossing over Mt. Hood and into the rain shadow. Our next stop was Warm Springs. There, we happened upon a most intriguing thrift store. Brenda purchased some DVDs and we moved on.
We pressed on to Madras. Naturally, we stopped at the Visitors’ Center (more pamphlets!), and then did a walkabout, during which Brenda admired the local flora. She picked a couple of desert blooms, stopping to sniff them every so often for the rest of the walk.
An hour later we were in Bend, the bustling metropolis of the High Desert. It was beautiful, and also quite a bit colder than we had anticipated. We bundled up and walked around the downtown area, where Brenda chose to dine at the McMenamins Old St. Francis School. It was crowded and loud with the Friday night dinner rush, but Brenda seemed right at home there. Her many years spent working at another McMenamins, The Kennedy School, showed in the ease with which she navigated the space.
The time had come to return to our homeland in the west. We stopped to visit the cows, to pick sage, and to watch the sun setting behind the buttes before driving home.
Now we’re busying thinking about a trip to Sisters and Salem.
We are pleased to introduce our newest Supported Living member, Heather. UCP began supporting Heather at the beginning of June and in just a few short weeks, Heather has experienced a new level of independence and pure joy.
Heather's entry into UCP's supported living program has been a HUGE team effort. First we worked with Heather to find an apartment, and then, on moving day, her church community moved her into her new living space. They were amazingly coordinated and efficient. Heather spent her first night in her new apartment with one of our Support Specialists, Maig, and since then has been working with several of our staff to help her make sure that her apartment and her new life are everything she wants and needs.
Heather recently hired a live-in caregiver (what UCP terms a “Roommate”) who will work weeknights and weekends. Heather also receives caseload management services from Assistant Team Leader Cora Olson, who ensures Heather’s overall health and safety.
So, welcome to Supported Living, Heather.
We hope you continue to enjoy living in your apartment and the supports you receive from UCP for many years to come!