October 2012 • Volume 19, Issue 4 - Portage County Board of ...


October 2012 • Volume 19, Issue 4 - Portage County Board of ...


Making the difference in meeting lifelong needs • www.portagedd.org

October 2012

Volume 19, Issue 4

Portage County Board of

Developmental Disabilities

Dennis M. Coble

Administration Building

2606 Brady Lake Rd.

Ravenna, OH 44266-1657

Superintendent’s Office:


Board Office:


Fax: 330-297-1202

Website: www.portagedd.org

Business Office:


Service & Support



Family Support

Services Program:




Adult Services:

Portage Industries

7008 State Rte. 88

Ravenna, OH 44266-9134


Fax 330-297-8994

Children’s Services:

Happy Day School

2500 Brady Lake Rd.

Ravenna, OH 44266-1698


Fax 330-673-3714


Emergency Number


Hiram Farm Living and Learning Community

Helps Participants Grow

“Hiram Farm embraces ‘gentle

teaching’ philosophies which include

ensuring that the individuals feel

unconditionaly valued everyday and

learn how to unconditionaly value

others. These can be things that

do not come naturally to those

with Autism Spectrum Disorders.

They work to create a peaceful

enviornment for individuals to

practice these skills throughout

their work day.” For more info call

330 569-3441 or visit their website

at www.hiramfarm.org

Shawn McKinney has been attending the day program at Hiram Farm Living and Learning Community

since June 2009. The program initially started with six participants and has now grown to twenty-three.

In those three years, Shawn has learned many new skills related to working on a farm; including planting

and harvesting vegetables, and caring for farm animals. His favorite activities include just about anything

related to getting to use a hose, such as giving water to the

animals or caring for them. He has also learned to use wood

working tools to make crafts such as bird feeders or candle

holders. In this picture, he is bottle feeding a new calf on the

farm. The calves are the newest animals on the farm, which also

include pigs, sheep, rabbits, ducks, and chickens.

Summer or winter, warm or cool, rain or shine, Shawn enjoys

going to the farm every day. He wears his work boots, takes his

work gloves, and rides one of the two Hiram Farm vans back

and forth from home. He enjoys the physical activity, the animal

care, the work and the relationships he has developed there.

This environment has been fantastic for Shawn! His family has

seen his language and social skills grow, he is losing weight from daily physical activity, and his behavior

management meds have been reduced significantly. Shawn is a happy guy with meaningful work and is

grateful for Hiram Farm.

Hiram Farm is a community project born out of the desire to provide inspiration and meaningful work for

the individual growth of people with Autism Spectrum Disorders.

This adult day program and organic farm is located on 120 acres on the southwest corner of Rt. 82 and

Rt. 700 in Hiram, Ohio.

PCBDD does not discriminate in

provision of services or employment

because of handicap, race, color,

creed, national origin, sex or age.

www.portagedd.org • October 2012Volume 19, Issue 4

Department News From Around the PCBDD

Happy Day School

The beginning of the school year has started off with a bang!

Everyone at HDS was excited and pleased about the parking lot

repaving and exterior lighting upgrades and hope that families see

the improvement as well! Although we had to delay the start of school

by one day, it was well-worth it!

We are at full capacity this fall with two preschool classrooms,

three full school-age classrooms and eleven, large Early Intervention


All of our classrooms are up and rolling. They are talking about

all kinds of things- families, fall activities, getting to know each other.

They are working hard on language and self-help and independence.

We also have offered Kindermusik again for 6 weeks to our Early

Intervention students and their families- it’s wonderful to see families

interacting with their child!

We also welcome Early Head Start with three classes in our

building this year. We have had a positive relationship with them and

have learned to collaborate together on children that we both serve.

The Parent Council Silent Auction and Craft show is soon

approaching on Saturday, October 20 th from 9:00 – 3:00 pm. We

have everything- baskets, concessions, kid’s korner, apple

dumplings, and vendors! We hope that families can stop out and visit

and support the auction!

Also, we are beginning to think about Parent Conferences,

Thanksgiving activities and Holiday programs. Lastly, we have had

some major changes in the kitchen this year. With the fight on

obesity, the Ohio department of Education and the US Department

of Agriculture have issued strict guidelines on portion control,

minimizing sweets and calorie limits during the week! We are

working hard at complying with the regulations and still meeting the

needs of our students.


Gail McAlister

Director of Children’s Services

Refresh Project

On Monday September 17th, we began the implementation of

our new Refresh Project here at Portage Industries. The Refresh

Project involves offering individuals several options for services

throughout the day here at PI. One of the main activities prior to the

initiation of this project was to offer individuals and their families the

opportunity to let us know what type of services in which they wish

to be engaged.

Several months ago, surveys were sent to everyone attending

PI, asking about individual preferences with regards to work and

activities. Based on survey responses, individuals were assigned to

different programming areas/ groups. These groups include

activities only groups, production only groups and groups where

individuals engage in production and activities. We hope that this

change will provide more options and satisfaction for the people

that attend our day program.

It is our belief that our program will be stronger if we can offer a

variety of services versus offering only vocational opportunities.

We know that this change may bring challenges, but the PI

administrative team is highly confident that everyone will rise to the

occasion and make this project succeed.

I also wanted to address some concerns that have been raised

regarding Portage Industries, Inc. opening a facility in Ravenna.

Several individuals and parents have expressed concern that

this move will mean that we will have no work here at Portage

Industries. I want to assure you that this is not true. We will have

work here at Portage Industries just as we have in the past. While

work may come and go due to the economy or the gain or loss of

a particular job, there is no plan to remove all work from Portage


Bill Whitacre

Director of Adult Services

• Watch for Information on the Knights of Columbus Basketball

shoot out which will be sent home soon

• Session II bowling will be starting up in January 2013, more

information will be sent home in November



Congratulations Adam!

Congratulations to Adam Derthick

for a great first year showing market

pigs at the Randolph Fair. Adam

is a 10 year old 5 th grade boy with

Cerebral Palsy and developmental

delays. Adam was born 4 months

pre-mature and weighed 1 pound 5

ounces. Adam went through the Early

Intervention (EI) and Pre-school

programs at Happy Day School and

then continued onto J.A. Garfield

Schools. Today he is very active and

participates in many activities with his classmates and now 4-H members.

Adam showed his Hampshire Pig, Beethoven, in the Lightweight Division. This division

consists of pigs weighing between 175-229 pounds. There were four classes within the

Lightweight Division, a winner in each class was chosen, and then returned for the final class

to determine the Lightweight Division Champion. That champion would then compete for the

Grand and Reserve Grand Champion Market Hog. Adam won his class and returned for the

Division Champion class. Adam won the Division and was able to compete in the Champion

of Champions class. When Adam won the Lightweight Division there was not a dry eye in the

stands. Everyone cheered! They were so excited for him.

Adam was the youngest amongst the top four division winners to compete for Grand and

Reserve Champion. Even though Adam did not win Grand or Reserve Champion Market Hog

he ended up overall 5th out of 158 pigs that competed at the fair - quite an accomplishment

within itself for the first year!

There were so many people that were so proud of Adam and his accomplishments in his

first year that he reminded everyone what 4-H is about….. Watching the kids be successful,

the responsibility that is needed to keep accurate records to raise and show an animal and

most of all having fun!

Christina Miller takes first place in two events

On August 18, 2012, Christina Miller competed in the

Pegasus Farm Horse Show and she received two 1 st place

trophies and one 3 rd place. Christina has been riding at

Pegasus for 24 years.

On August 26,

Christina participated in

the Dress a Cow Contest

at the Portage County

Randolph Fair. Her

“Sponge Bob Square

Cow” earned her a 3 rd

place. Congratulations


Parent Council

for Portage County

Developmental Disabilities

Parent Council is for anyone with

connections to residents in Portage County who

have developmental disabilities. Family, friends,

teachers and providers are all included.

Meetings are held the second Monday of

each Month at 6:30 p.m. at Happy Day School

(HDS) in the lounge. Scheduled community

activities include the Craft Show and Auction on

October 20, 2012 at HDS from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.,

Santa’s Shop in December at HDS and Portage

Industries (PI), The Rummage Sale on March 9,

2013 at PI from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., the Community

Carnival on April 13, 2013 at HDS from 1 p.m. to

4 p.m. and the May Dinner at HDS on May 14,

2013 at 6 p.m.

The unique opportunities and unique

concerns of people closely connected to

individuals with developmental delays are

supported by this caring organization. Fresh

ideas for sharing and learning are always

welcomed. To become involved or to share

thoughts about how to reach out to the

community, please call Debbie Kempisty at

HDS or Annette Dowling at 330 297-0302.

Dance reminders!

Coleman Adult Day Services will host a

dance at 6695 N. Chestnut St., Ravenna

on November 8 th from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

There will be a country western theme

dance at Happy Day School on November

16, 2012 from 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.


2606 Brady Lake Road

Ravenna, OH 44266-1657

October/November/December 2012

October 19, 2012 Agency In-Service & Staff Recognition Programs Closed

October 20, 2012 Craft Auction at Happy Day School 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

October 22, 2012 Programs Resume

November 14, 2012 Board Meeting 5:30 p.m. Dennis M. Coble Administration Building

November 22 - 23, 2012 Thanksgiving Break

Programs Closed

November 26, 2012 Programs Resume

December 14, 2012 In-ServiceAdult Services Program Closed

December 17, 2012 Programs Resume

December 19, 2012 Board Meeting 5:30 p.m. Dennis M. Coble Administration Building

December 24 – 31, 2012 Winter Break

January 1, 2013 New Year’s Day

January 2, 2013 Programs Resume

The mission of the Portage County Board of Developmental Disabilities is to ensure the availability of programs, services, and

supports that assist eligible individuals with developmental disabilities in choosing and achieving a life of increasing capability such that

they can live, work, and socialize in the community, and to assist and support the families of these individuals in achieving this objective.


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