This week ADEC is celebrating and appreciating our DSPs (Direct Support Professionals!) The DSP managers have been coming up with fun and creative tokens of appreciation, things like hot breakfast, taco bars, restaurant lunches, custom DSP t-shirts, and even a chance to get a free car wash from management. Shondale, who is the manager at the Goshen Day Program wrapped up some fun, small, SECRET gifts for their DSPs to choose from every morning. On Wednesday morning, someone MAY have witnessed the group of DSPs shaking and squeezing said gifts in an effort to guess what they were before making their choices – allegedly. We’ve also had a lot of support and appreciation from all of our Day Program attendees as well, in the forms of personal thank-yous, cards, and videos.

It’s been a fun week, and we all love to show how much we value our DSPs, but our appreciation doesn’t end when the week does. Our DSPs have the toughest and most rewarding jobs at ADEC, and there is no such thing as too much praise in that regard. THANK YOU to all of our wonderful DSPs and staff.

The role of a Direct Support Professional is to provide essential guidance, support, and engagement to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities so they may have a sense of agency. The goal is for everyone in the care of a DSP to be able to make as many of their own decisions as possible, to learn to do things for themselves as they are able, and to live their lives with endless possibility.

The roles of DSPs have grown over the years, so instead of only being caregivers, a DSP must be ready and able to act somewhat like a teacher, friend, clinician, leader, administrator, maintenance, clerical, and a dozen other things. People who shine in this position typically share traits such as patience, kindness, empathy, and a sense of humor, and they also uphold a strong code of ethics. They stay up to date with trainings and certifications, and work to assist those in their care to set and reach personal goals, as well as integrate and engage them with their local communities.

The career of a DSP is not always an easy one, but it is also one of the most rewarding positions someone can take on. There are tasks as basic as assisting someone to get up and dressed, as well as tasks that may help someone to reach a life-changing goal. And this is all while ensuring the health, safety, and dignity of everyone in their care. DSPs at ADEC may work in Supported Living, Group Homes, Day Programs, Transportation, or Vocational Training. They could assist with things like preparing a meal, teaching an art class, or act as escort and chaperone to a group attending a fun evening event. Whatever the placement, they will be appreciated and have the sense of satisfaction that comes from being someone who makes a difference in the world.

ADEC recently became members of The National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals. With this new partnership, all DSPs (Direct Support Professionals) who work at ADEC will now have the unprecedented opportunity to attain a National DSP Certification. ADEC will be providing all access to the program and necessary materials, but when a DSP completes the program, their certification will be theirs, recognized throughout the entire U.S. It’s a prestigious certification, a career boost, and invaluable training for any DSP.

ADEC is currently the only NADSP member offering this program in Northern Indiana. The option for certification will be an ongoing benefit offered by ADEC, and completion of the certification program will also improve career options and compensation within the company.

If you’d like learn more about becoming a DSP here at ADEC, or about our amazing new National DSP Certification Plan, check out our Careers Page.