Writing on the Wall: Spring 2021

The quarterly newsletter of Wall Residences: a Virginia agency who provides services for individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Services include sponsored residential, group homes, community engagement & community coaching, nursing, therapeutic consultation, and behavioral support. This issue highlights recent achievements of residents, providers, staff, and the agency as a whole during the first quarter of 2021.

The quarterly newsletter of Wall Residences: a Virginia agency who provides services for individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Services include sponsored residential, group homes, community engagement & community coaching, nursing, therapeutic consultation, and behavioral support. This issue highlights recent achievements of residents, providers, staff, and the agency as a whole during the first quarter of 2021.


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<str<strong>on</strong>g>Writing</str<strong>on</strong>g><br />

<strong>on</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

<strong>Wall</strong><br />

<strong>Spring</strong> <strong>2021</strong><br />

Our Best Shot:<br />

Vaccine clinics offer hope. Page 7<br />

3<br />

Serving O<strong>the</strong>rs<br />

Trina finds joy and growth in<br />

volunteering through WRAP<br />

5 6<br />

Our Happy Place<br />

Nancy reveals <strong>the</strong> simple secret to<br />

a happy home and life as a provider<br />

Goals Met with a Smile<br />

Hard work has a big payoff<br />

for Missy

Director’s Corner<br />

John Wea<strong>the</strong>rspo<strong>on</strong><br />

As I write this it has been almost <strong>on</strong>e<br />

year since I sent <strong>the</strong> first email to<br />

our Sp<strong>on</strong>sored Residential Providers<br />

letting <strong>the</strong>m know we were canceling<br />

our upcoming face-to-face regi<strong>on</strong>al<br />

provider meetings. It has been a year<br />

since we first implemented changes to<br />

our leave policy for employees adding<br />

days to encourage staff to take time<br />

off instead of coming to work with<br />

symptoms of COVID, well before this<br />

was supported by <strong>the</strong> Government.<br />

Now with new cases finally declining<br />

and more and more of our staff<br />

and <strong>the</strong> individuals we serve getting<br />

vaccinated, our leadership team has<br />

begun having c<strong>on</strong>versati<strong>on</strong>s about<br />

when we may be able to begin to<br />

ga<strong>the</strong>r in groups like that again this<br />

year. We know <strong>the</strong>re are still many<br />

hurdles ahead of us but with over<br />

1600 doses being received within <strong>the</strong><br />

agency, we are beginning to see that<br />

being toge<strong>the</strong>r again may become a<br />

reality this year.<br />

We would not be in this place without<br />

<strong>the</strong> volunteers, health department<br />

employees, and staff at pharmacies<br />

working every day to get people<br />

vaccinated. We learned early <strong>on</strong> in<br />

<strong>the</strong> vaccinati<strong>on</strong> process that some<br />

communicati<strong>on</strong> had been crossed<br />

in relati<strong>on</strong> to Sp<strong>on</strong>sored Residential<br />

homes and access to <strong>the</strong> vaccine<br />

through <strong>the</strong> nati<strong>on</strong>al vaccinati<strong>on</strong><br />

program.<br />

I want to thank Craig Camidge,<br />

Michele Thomas, and o<strong>the</strong>rs at<br />

DBHDS for seeing a need and<br />

stepping in to catch <strong>the</strong> sp<strong>on</strong>sored<br />

homes that would have been missed<br />

in <strong>the</strong> vaccine roll-out. I also want<br />

to thank <strong>the</strong> family pharmacies that<br />

stepped up to help make this a reality<br />

for not <strong>on</strong>ly <strong>Wall</strong> Residences but<br />

o<strong>the</strong>r Sp<strong>on</strong>sored Residential agencies.<br />

In particular, I want to thank Elkt<strong>on</strong><br />

Family Pharmacy, The Pharm House,<br />

BREMO Pharmacy, and <strong>the</strong> Emmet<br />

Street CVS in Charlottesville for<br />

setting up large vaccinati<strong>on</strong> sites and<br />

making sure our services and o<strong>the</strong>rs<br />

were not forgotten. Thank you as well<br />

to staff and providers who helped run<br />

<strong>the</strong> clinics. Because of this, we can<br />

look at <strong>the</strong> summer with optimism<br />

that more outings, safe ga<strong>the</strong>rings,<br />

and greater freedom of movement in<br />

and around <strong>the</strong> community may safely<br />

start to return. Thank you to every<strong>on</strong>e<br />

helping make this a reality!<br />

Making a New Choice<br />

Randy is a friendly, social guy with<br />

a great sense of humor who loves his<br />

family and his dog, Daisy. Ask him<br />

about <strong>the</strong> antics Daisy has been up<br />

to lately and you’ll hear all about her<br />

delivering packages for USPS and<br />

driving tractors with hay bales! He enjoys<br />

riding his tractor, visiting local attracti<strong>on</strong>s,<br />

helping cook meals at home,<br />

NASCAR racing, and Judge Judy.<br />

Prior to starting Therapeutic C<strong>on</strong>sultati<strong>on</strong><br />

Randy would sometimes get<br />

upset when things didn’t go <strong>the</strong> way<br />

he thought <strong>the</strong>y would, such as when<br />

something wasn’t working correctly<br />

or plans were changed. When Randy<br />

became upset, he had a difficult time<br />

expressing how he was feeling and<br />

getting help in a way that was safe<br />

and effective. Visual supports were<br />

implemented to help Randy identify<br />

what to do during <strong>the</strong>se times. He has<br />

made huge strides in asking for help<br />

and is a pro at finding new activities<br />

from his choice board that he can do<br />

instead. He has a great understanding<br />

of things that are triggering for him<br />

and almost every week identifies a<br />

new replacement behavior... although<br />

petting Daisy is <strong>the</strong> favorite by far!<br />

Now, if you ask Randy how things<br />

are going, he’ll tell you “I am okay”<br />

because he chooses to just “let it go.”<br />


The Satisfacti<strong>on</strong><br />

of Serving O<strong>the</strong>rs<br />

WRAP participant Trina discovered<br />

a new passi<strong>on</strong> for volunteering at <strong>the</strong><br />

Rescue Missi<strong>on</strong> of Roanoke thanks to<br />

support from her WRAP DSP, Carey<br />

Case. Trina and her WRAP group<br />

were looking for ways to get involved<br />

in <strong>the</strong> community, meet new people,<br />

and try new no-cost activities so<br />

Carey c<strong>on</strong>tacted <strong>the</strong> Rescue Missi<strong>on</strong><br />

of Roanoke to see if <strong>the</strong>y welcomed<br />

volunteers who needed extra support.<br />

Plans were made and Trina started<br />

serving meals to people experiencing<br />

homelessness in November.<br />

“Volunteering at <strong>the</strong> Roanoke Rescue<br />

Missi<strong>on</strong> by serving food to <strong>the</strong> homeless<br />

has given Trina a huge boost in<br />

her self-c<strong>on</strong>fidence, evident by her<br />

friendly, upbeat attitude towards fellow<br />

volunteers and <strong>the</strong> people whom she<br />

serves. Trina has learned <strong>the</strong> value<br />

of teamwork and pitches in to help<br />

at every opportunity without being<br />

asked,” Carey noted. “I have offered<br />

o<strong>the</strong>r community activities for Trina to<br />

explore and each time she says, ‘I want<br />

to go back to <strong>the</strong> Rescue Missi<strong>on</strong>. I<br />

love serving food to <strong>the</strong> homeless.’”<br />

Stacy Boris, Volunteer Coordinator<br />

at <strong>the</strong> Missi<strong>on</strong>,<br />

said, “Trina has<br />

come in and<br />

jumped right into<br />

our food service<br />

ministry with an<br />

open heart. She’s<br />

flexible and<br />

willing to take<br />

<strong>on</strong> whatever resp<strong>on</strong>sibilities<br />

are<br />

presented for <strong>the</strong><br />

day. She is truly<br />

just a light!”<br />

Trina especially<br />

likes joking around with <strong>the</strong> people<br />

and making new friends. Her familiar<br />

greeting to regular patr<strong>on</strong>s is “I got<br />

you!” as she anticipates <strong>the</strong>ir preferences.<br />

She has also developed new<br />

skills, such as learning food safety<br />

practices and to c<strong>on</strong>fidently greet new<br />

people in a professi<strong>on</strong>al manner.<br />

Trina has appreciated that joining in<br />

<strong>the</strong> meal after serving has helped her<br />

to practice budgeting her m<strong>on</strong>ey for<br />

splurging <strong>on</strong> Starbucks and sushi as<br />

well as saving up for a trip later in<br />

<strong>the</strong> year. Residential Provider Susan<br />

Trina and Carey volunteer frequently at<br />

<strong>the</strong> Rescue Missi<strong>on</strong> of Roanoke.<br />

Lewis noted that <strong>the</strong> social isolati<strong>on</strong><br />

caused by COVID-19 is hard <strong>on</strong> an<br />

extroverted social butterfly like Trina<br />

but her WRAP outings have allowed<br />

her to get out more, learn about building<br />

community through service, and<br />

feel more relaxed overall. WRAP is<br />

an integral part of meeting Trina’s<br />

social needs where she can explore<br />

her larger community <strong>on</strong> her own<br />

terms.<br />

Meet <strong>the</strong> New ESOP Advisory Committee<br />

Angie Newman<br />

Admissi<strong>on</strong>s &<br />

Program<br />

Management<br />

Caitlyn Davis<br />

Wrap &<br />

In Home<br />

Services<br />

Amanda Craig<br />

Administrati<strong>on</strong><br />

Employee<br />

Stock<br />

Ownership<br />

Plan<br />

Kl’Methia<br />

Merriman<br />

Group Home<br />

DSPs<br />

India Eanes<br />

Office<br />

Pers<strong>on</strong>nel<br />

Rebecca<br />

Ledingham<br />

TC, Training &<br />

Nursing Teams<br />


Self Care<br />

As <strong>the</strong> pandemic moves into its<br />

sec<strong>on</strong>d year, it feels like “self<br />

care” is <strong>the</strong> buzzword of <strong>the</strong> moment.<br />

However trite <strong>the</strong> term may<br />

seem, finding ways within and<br />

outside of work to look after your<br />

holistic wellbeing is very important.<br />

Doing so well... or<br />

ignoring it... can and will impact<br />

not <strong>on</strong>ly you, but those around<br />

you. Here are a few ideas to try in<br />

various areas of self care.<br />

Workplace/Professi<strong>on</strong>al<br />

Join a peer support group<br />

Read professi<strong>on</strong>al journals<br />

Attend professi<strong>on</strong>al development<br />

Physical<br />

Develop a regular sleep schedule<br />

Take a walk at lunchtime<br />

Take time off work for yourself<br />

Psychological<br />

Keep a journal<br />

Take up a hobby<br />

Turn off your email and ph<strong>on</strong>e<br />

Emoti<strong>on</strong>al<br />

Nurture supportive friendships<br />

Write three good things about<br />

each day<br />

Spiritual<br />

Attend religious services<br />

(even if <strong>on</strong>line)<br />

Do yoga<br />

Spend time in nature<br />

Relati<strong>on</strong>ship<br />

Prioritize your closest loved <strong>on</strong>es<br />

Attend special events of<br />

friends & family<br />

Thanks to Stephanie Moore for<br />

<strong>the</strong>se self care tips!<br />

A S<strong>on</strong>g in Her Heart<br />

Lora’s face lights up as she sits down<br />

at <strong>the</strong> keyboard. She plucks out a few<br />

tentative notes to be sure everything<br />

is working correctly, <strong>the</strong>n opens up<br />

<strong>the</strong> s<strong>on</strong>gbook. So<strong>on</strong> <strong>the</strong> room is filled<br />

with music as Lora’s fingers fly across<br />

<strong>the</strong> keyboard and she gleefully belts<br />

out s<strong>on</strong>gs of<br />

praise.<br />

Music is <strong>on</strong>e<br />

of her favorite<br />

ways to<br />

relax in her<br />

new home.<br />

Lora achieved a big goal in November:<br />

she moved out <strong>on</strong> her own! DSP<br />

Christina Cruz supports her <strong>on</strong> weekdays<br />

with chores, cashing her weekly<br />

checks, and grocery runs. Lora shares<br />

that Christina is a “good worker” who<br />

helps her with things that need to get<br />

d<strong>on</strong>e around her new home. The two<br />

also have fun toge<strong>the</strong>r. Christina sings<br />

at Lora’s request as Lora plays her<br />

piano. Outside <strong>the</strong> house, trips to little<br />

free libraries are a favorite. Lora c<strong>on</strong>fides<br />

that <strong>the</strong> medical books are her<br />

favorites as she loves to learn about<br />

how things work.<br />

“<br />

I check my email. Read. Talk to my<br />

friends. Play my piano and sing.<br />

When <strong>on</strong> her own at home, she enjoys<br />

checking her email and chatting with<br />

friends <strong>on</strong> <strong>the</strong> ph<strong>on</strong>e...but it is music<br />

that clearly<br />

makes her soul<br />

come alive. If<br />

you are really<br />

lucky, when<br />

visiting her in<br />

her new home,<br />

she’ll show<br />

you to where her keyboard holds a<br />

place of significance and treat you to<br />

a c<strong>on</strong>cert. And this c<strong>on</strong>cert is <strong>on</strong>e that<br />

is a treat for <strong>the</strong> eyes and <strong>the</strong> ears<br />

because at <strong>the</strong> completi<strong>on</strong> of each<br />

s<strong>on</strong>g, she will look up as you applaud<br />

and her beaming smile will fill your<br />

own heart with joy.<br />

As Lora herself says describing her<br />

present happiness, “I’ve come a l<strong>on</strong>g<br />

ways!”<br />


Put My Home Where My Mouth Was<br />

“This is My Happy Place” reads <strong>the</strong><br />

sign next to Nancy Kaplan’s fr<strong>on</strong>t<br />

door. Spend even a few minutes in<br />

Nancy’s home and <strong>the</strong> truth of that<br />

statement is quickly clear.<br />

Nancy has been a provider with <strong>Wall</strong><br />

Residences for over six years, after<br />

years of experience with supportive<br />

apartment living, group homes, prevocati<strong>on</strong>al,<br />

and o<strong>the</strong>r work with individuals<br />

with disabilities. She’s a fierce<br />

advocate who gave speeches from<br />

<strong>the</strong> viewpoint of DSPs during budget<br />

hearings and fought to have <strong>the</strong> training<br />

centers closed down. When <strong>the</strong><br />

effort was successful she says she felt<br />

str<strong>on</strong>gly she needed “to put my home<br />

where my mouth was.”<br />

That good fight has included supporting<br />

<strong>the</strong> men with healthy changes<br />

and proper medicati<strong>on</strong> management,<br />

equipping <strong>the</strong>m for happier lives. It<br />

has meant advocating for employment<br />

in <strong>the</strong> community and seeking creative<br />

soluti<strong>on</strong>s when a positi<strong>on</strong> wasn’t<br />

easily found. Both men held jobs pre-<br />

COVID. Brand<strong>on</strong>’s job will resume<br />

<strong>on</strong>ce <strong>the</strong> church where he provides<br />

<strong>the</strong> valuable services of sweeping and<br />

cleaning returns to in pers<strong>on</strong> ga<strong>the</strong>rings.<br />

Grays<strong>on</strong> will be seeking new<br />

employment <strong>on</strong>ce he is fully vaccinated.<br />

The men use <strong>the</strong> m<strong>on</strong>ey <strong>the</strong>y<br />

earn from <strong>the</strong>ir jobs for horse riding<br />

less<strong>on</strong>s and are also active in a bible<br />

study at church. Weekly outings for<br />

take out are ano<strong>the</strong>r feature of life in<br />

this happy place. As Brand<strong>on</strong> notes,<br />

“Nancy. Zach. Grays<strong>on</strong>. Me. We are<br />

happy.” Laughter flows as all agree<br />

that statement is a very accurate<br />

<strong>on</strong>e and share <strong>the</strong> household motto,<br />

“D<strong>on</strong>’t break <strong>the</strong> provider!”<br />

While Nancy adores her role as a<br />

provider, she recommends those<br />

c<strong>on</strong>sidering it be thoughtful about if it<br />

is <strong>the</strong> right fit for <strong>the</strong>m. “You have to<br />

share your life. Be h<strong>on</strong>est and weigh<br />

that first. But if this is right for you, I<br />

have worked under a lot of agencies<br />

and <strong>Wall</strong> is <strong>the</strong> best. I adore it (being<br />

a provider). I love what I do. I found<br />

a place where my heart can be as<br />

open as I want.” Nancy appreciates<br />

<strong>the</strong> relati<strong>on</strong>ships with <strong>Wall</strong>’s support<br />

staff, but even more so <strong>the</strong> relati<strong>on</strong>ships<br />

with all with whom she shares<br />

a home, noting that each household<br />

member is different and yet meld<br />

toge<strong>the</strong>r well. She gets joy from<br />

watching Brand<strong>on</strong> and Grays<strong>on</strong>’s<br />

friendship c<strong>on</strong>tinue to deepen. In<br />

<strong>the</strong> end though, it comes down to<br />

something very simple. “I love <strong>the</strong>m.<br />

I just love <strong>the</strong>m.”<br />

Below: Grays<strong>on</strong>, Nancy, Brand<strong>on</strong>, and<br />

Zach share a happy home.<br />

Cover: Grays<strong>on</strong> gets his vaccine.<br />

In becoming a provider, she<br />

found not just a job, but a<br />

calling. “I find it fascinating,”<br />

she shares. “I like a good fight.<br />

I like advocacy. I like watching<br />

<strong>the</strong>m grow.” “They” are<br />

Brand<strong>on</strong> and Grays<strong>on</strong>, <strong>the</strong> two<br />

young men Nancy has supported<br />

since 2016 and 2014 respectively.<br />

Grays<strong>on</strong> and Brand<strong>on</strong><br />

call each o<strong>the</strong>r “bro<strong>the</strong>rs from<br />

ano<strong>the</strong>r mo<strong>the</strong>r” and <strong>the</strong>re is<br />

obvious affecti<strong>on</strong> between<br />

<strong>the</strong> two, Nancy, and Nancy’s<br />

grown s<strong>on</strong> Zach, a full time<br />

backup worker who also lives<br />

in <strong>the</strong> home.<br />


Perseverance Pays Off in Goals Met<br />

Missy is a young woman with a zest<br />

for life! Her love for o<strong>the</strong>rs (especially<br />

her family) is str<strong>on</strong>g and she<br />

will often giggle while talking about<br />

her young nephew’s antics. Missy<br />

has c<strong>on</strong>tinuously stood back up again<br />

when life has knocked her down and<br />

kept her eye <strong>on</strong> her goals al<strong>on</strong>g <strong>the</strong><br />

way. Despite having visi<strong>on</strong> and hearing<br />

impairments, Missy has worked to<br />

adapt to her world around her.<br />

When starting Therapeutic C<strong>on</strong>sultati<strong>on</strong><br />

Services, Missy explained she<br />

just “wants to have a job like every<strong>on</strong>e<br />

else my age.” At <strong>the</strong> time, Missy<br />

was receiving supportive employment<br />

services but not quite ready to start<br />

<strong>on</strong> site job coaching. She tackled <strong>the</strong><br />

goals she needed to reach and when<br />

<strong>the</strong> time was right started training<br />

at Food Li<strong>on</strong>. Meanwhile, Missy<br />

worked toward o<strong>the</strong>r goals with Therapeutic<br />

C<strong>on</strong>sultati<strong>on</strong> to prepare for<br />

new types of interacti<strong>on</strong>s a job would<br />

bring. The effort she put in did not go<br />

unseen! She expressed she “wanted<br />

o<strong>the</strong>rs to like being around me” and<br />

“to be proud of myself” frequently<br />

when discussing her goals in life.<br />

The road was tough for her some<br />

days, as old habits are hard to break.<br />

However, if you put a challenge in<br />

fr<strong>on</strong>t of Missy, she will overcome it<br />

with a smile <strong>on</strong> her face. Her hard<br />

work at Food Li<strong>on</strong> prepared her for a<br />

part time job offer at a local daycare<br />

facility, working in <strong>the</strong> kitchen! Missy<br />

is a blessing to her employer and<br />

works hard to prepare snacks/meals<br />

for <strong>the</strong> children she serves, as well<br />

as clean <strong>the</strong> lunch area to ensure it is<br />

safe for all. She interacts with adults<br />

and children at her job and has been<br />

praised for her dedicati<strong>on</strong>, smile, hard<br />

work, perseverance, and ability to<br />

relate to both <strong>the</strong> staff and children.<br />

Missy recently had her annual planning<br />

meeting and identified areas she<br />

would like to work <strong>on</strong> next. She is<br />

always striving to improve herself<br />

and is <strong>the</strong> definiti<strong>on</strong> of an overcomer!<br />

Missy’s mom has expressed gratitude<br />

for <strong>the</strong> help Missy received to<br />

improve social and communicati<strong>on</strong><br />

skills, as well as teaching her alternative<br />

behaviors to use.<br />

When she is not working, Missy<br />

enjoys going to day support, shopping<br />

with her mom, getting her nails<br />

d<strong>on</strong>e, helping to babysit her nephews,<br />

and having girl time with her sister.<br />

Watch out world, Missy has found her<br />

wings and taken flight!<br />

Know Some<strong>on</strong>e Who Could Benefit from Our Services?<br />

The <strong>Wall</strong> Residences Admissi<strong>on</strong>s team has staff in all parts of <strong>the</strong> state to resp<strong>on</strong>d to your referral needs and<br />

answer questi<strong>on</strong>s about <strong>the</strong> services we offer. We work quickly to find <strong>the</strong> right match for l<strong>on</strong>gterm success<br />

while striving for <strong>the</strong> quickest placement in services possible. The Admissi<strong>on</strong>s Team is here to serve you.<br />

www.wallresidences.com<br />

Alex Jacks<strong>on</strong><br />

Admissi<strong>on</strong>s<br />

Director<br />

(434) 610-7578<br />

Emily Eagle<br />

Central Virginia, Danville,<br />

Charlottesville, Staunt<strong>on</strong>/<br />

Waynesboro/Lexingt<strong>on</strong><br />

(434) 907-5067<br />

Ashea Green<br />

Nor<strong>the</strong>rn<br />

Regi<strong>on</strong><br />

(202) 760-6411<br />

Brooke Keen<br />

Roanoke, NRV,<br />

SWVA<br />

(540) 250-8482<br />

Lisa Schalasny<br />

Eastern<br />

Regi<strong>on</strong><br />

(804) 380-4309<br />


Two Shots at Hope<br />

Over 800 individuals, providers,<br />

DSPs, and staff rolled up <strong>the</strong>ir sleeves<br />

in early <strong>2021</strong> for <strong>the</strong> opportunity to<br />

receive both doses of <strong>the</strong> Pfizer or<br />

Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. This<br />

massive undertaking included clinics<br />

around <strong>the</strong> state. Six clinics were<br />

held in Madis<strong>on</strong> Heights, two each<br />

were held in Staunt<strong>on</strong> and Floyd, and<br />

clinics were held <strong>on</strong> a rolling basis<br />

in Richm<strong>on</strong>d. In additi<strong>on</strong>, several<br />

providers hosted clinics for <strong>the</strong>ir<br />

area. Creativity and safety were <strong>the</strong><br />

hallmarks of <strong>the</strong> clinics, which took<br />

different forms, including creating<br />

private cubicles within bigger open<br />

rooms at <strong>on</strong>e locati<strong>on</strong> and using a<br />

drive through model at ano<strong>the</strong>r.<br />

Diana Dyer was <strong>on</strong>e provider who<br />

hosted a series of clinics in her home.<br />

Diana said, “I said yes to <strong>the</strong> clinic<br />

because <strong>the</strong> individuals we live with<br />

have been talking a lot about wanting<br />

to get <strong>the</strong> shots and be able to go back<br />

to work less worried about COVID.<br />

I myself was nervous but decided it<br />

was <strong>the</strong> right thing to do to get <strong>the</strong><br />

shots.” Hosting a clinic wasn’t without<br />

frustrati<strong>on</strong>s. Diana noted ensuring<br />

<strong>the</strong> right amount of doses would be<br />

brought was <strong>on</strong>e of <strong>the</strong> most difficult<br />

parts. There was joy in it too, though.<br />

“Once we knew we had enough shots,<br />

<strong>the</strong> clinics were really a lot of fun. I<br />

really liked meeting new people. It<br />

was fun talking, serving snacks, helping<br />

with <strong>the</strong> forms, taking temps, and<br />

determining arms for shots. We got<br />

pretty efficient with <strong>the</strong> process!” A<br />

huge thank you to Diana and <strong>the</strong> o<strong>the</strong>r<br />

providers who opened <strong>the</strong>ir homes for<br />

clinics.<br />

with disabilities. A November 2020<br />

study by <strong>the</strong> West Health Institute<br />

and Johns Hopkins found people with<br />

intellectual and developmental disabilities<br />

were three times more likely<br />

to die of COVID-19.<br />

Classificati<strong>on</strong> of individuals living<br />

in sp<strong>on</strong>sored residential and group<br />

homes, providers, and DSPs as Group<br />

1a was <strong>the</strong> first step. This opened <strong>the</strong><br />

c<strong>on</strong>versati<strong>on</strong> about ensuring those associated<br />

with <strong>Wall</strong> Residences could<br />

safely access vaccines as so<strong>on</strong> as<br />

possible, with offices immediately<br />

offered as potential vaccine clinic<br />

sites. Numerous staff worked closely<br />

with state authorities and multiple<br />

pharmacies to make <strong>the</strong> clinics a<br />

reality. Thank you to all whose hard<br />

work resulted in so many gaining<br />

access to this critical protecti<strong>on</strong>.<br />

In total, over 1680 doses of <strong>the</strong><br />

vaccine were given over several<br />

m<strong>on</strong>ths at <strong>Wall</strong> Residences supported<br />

clinics, in partnership with state officials<br />

and pharmacies. A remarkable<br />

statistic and accomplishment! With<br />

so many people who are part of <strong>Wall</strong><br />

Residences now fully vaccinated, we<br />

look to <strong>the</strong> future with hope!<br />

“<br />

In total, over 1680 doses<br />

of <strong>the</strong> vaccine were given at<br />

<strong>Wall</strong> Residences supported<br />

clinics, in partnership<br />

with state officials<br />

and pharmacies.<br />

Tri<strong>on</strong>a (top), Branch<br />

(left), and Willie<br />

(above) were am<strong>on</strong>g<br />

<strong>the</strong> over 800 who<br />

received <strong>the</strong>ir vaccine.<br />

Leadership at <strong>Wall</strong> Residences had<br />

been following with great c<strong>on</strong>cern <strong>the</strong><br />

heavier impact of COVID <strong>on</strong> people<br />

<str<strong>on</strong>g>Writing</str<strong>on</strong>g> <strong>on</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Wall</strong>, <strong>Spring</strong> <strong>2021</strong> Editor Angie Covingt<strong>on</strong><br />

C<strong>on</strong>tributing Writers April Bourgois, Patience Holdren, Meredith Kapalka<br />


An Artist Emerges<br />

Sebastian has l<strong>on</strong>g been a fan of<br />

art but now he has become an artist<br />

himself! In September, he was paired<br />

with DSP Fitz Brown for In Home<br />

services. WRAP Coordinator Joey<br />

Warren noted, “Fitz and Sebastian<br />

are an amazing match and excepti<strong>on</strong>ally<br />

active. Over <strong>the</strong> past few m<strong>on</strong>ths<br />

<strong>the</strong>y have g<strong>on</strong>e hiking, kayaking, and<br />

many o<strong>the</strong>r outdoor activities, but<br />

<strong>the</strong> thing that stands out <strong>the</strong> most is<br />

Sebastian’s artwork.”<br />

make marks <strong>on</strong> his own while<br />

Fitz drew with him. Sebastian<br />

mastered this skill and is now<br />

making art independently.<br />

He now enjoys sitting to copy<br />

his sister’s artwork for l<strong>on</strong>g<br />

periods of time and finishes<br />

each drawing by writing <strong>the</strong><br />

character’s name.<br />

Before working with Fitz, he did not<br />

draw, but loved to watch o<strong>the</strong>rs make<br />

art. Sebastian is n<strong>on</strong>-verbal but would<br />

c<strong>on</strong>sistently ask o<strong>the</strong>rs to draw for<br />

him while he watched by bringing<br />

<strong>the</strong>m paper and pencils.<br />

Sebastian and Fitz started working<br />

<strong>on</strong> having him hold <strong>the</strong> pencils and<br />

Sebastian has moved from art appreciati<strong>on</strong> to<br />

<strong>the</strong> joy of drawing images himself. One of his<br />

drawings is pictured at left.<br />

Digital<br />

B<strong>on</strong>us<br />

The first m<strong>on</strong>ths of <strong>2021</strong> at <strong>Wall</strong><br />

Residences have included snow day<br />

fun, exploring new skills, creative<br />

crafts, game time, and more. Many<br />

individuals, providers, DSPs, and<br />

staff also did “not give up <strong>the</strong>ir shot!”<br />

We hope you enjoy this digital editi<strong>on</strong><br />

b<strong>on</strong>us image gallery.<br />

Have you liked and followed us <strong>on</strong><br />

Facebook and Instagram? We share<br />

uplifting images and stories like <strong>the</strong><br />

<strong>on</strong>es in this galley <strong>on</strong> social media<br />

multiple times each week!<br />




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