Boone Supported Living works with our local, state, and federal officials to ensure people with developmental disabilities have a voice; to ensure they have full access to their communities, to ensure necessary services are funded, and raise awareness to systems problems in mental health affecting those we serve.
We also work to raise awareness in our local community hoping to include them in our lives as we try to enter theirs.
Washington DC - Julie Walden, CEO, Advocates for People with Developmental Disabilities
Organized by the Columbia Chamber of Commerce
Boone Supported Living’s CEO joined members of the Chamber of Commerce on a trip to DC where they met with elected officials who represent Missouri.
11 Jul 2018
Jim's Story, "DOING GREAT IN MISSOURI".
Ed McManus’s Newsletter Feature
Jim Waldrip is a 44-year-old guy in a wheelchair with a stomach tube. He has cerebral palsy and epilepsy, and communicates using an IPAD with an augmentative program. That hasn’t stopped him from leading a full life. But the Illinois service system didn’t work out for him, so he and his family moved to Missouri, where he’s doing great.
As we all know, Illinois is 47th in UCP’s annual ranking of how well the states are serving people with I/DD. Missouri is 8th!This is Jim’s story. . . .
First, Jim has an amazing mom, Brenda Page, whom I knew years ago in TASH (The Assn. for Persons with Severe Handicaps). Brenda has moved all over central Illinois looking for better programs for Jim. They started out in Charleston, then moved to Bloomington when Jim was 6 so he could enroll in an integrated school program. Brenda met and married her second husband Roger there. They subsequently lived in Galesburg and Champaign but had to battle in both places to get integrated high school programs. Along the way, Brenda picked up a Ph.D, and she specializes in Special Education.
When Jim was 26, they moved back to Bloomington. “In the back of my mind,” Brenda said, “we were always thinking about what would happen if something happened to both of us, or me especially. But there was nothing in adult community living for Jim. It was so hard to believe Bloomington had nothing to offer. Agencies suggested checking into faraway Illinois places, and even those places were not welcoming, and were large, segregated facilities.”
Eventually, after Roger retired from his company, they returned to eastern Illinois, and in 2015 they obtained DHS funding so Jim could move into an 8-person CILA. “Jim thought it was something he would like,” said Brenda, “but he soon realized it was not home and they were not very supportive, and he cried to come home. We searched and searched across the state for months for a more supportive, inclusive living situation.”
They finally found an agency in central Illinois that agreed to move Jim into a 3-person CILA, and Brenda and Roger moved to a home nearby. “They promised a 1-1 aide so he could be out in the community going where he’d like to go every day, Monday through Friday. But when he moved in, that immediately fell through. They reneged on all their promises. Jim went everywhere when he was home 41 years with us. He had social connections, people knew him. It was breaking my heart to see that disappearing. At times Jim looked so sad. I feel like his eyes were pleading with me to take him home.
“So after a few months, I was again online searching for other options, but agencies just wouldn’t consider the stomach tube. I didn’t know how we were going to survive this. My sister lived in Columbia, MO, and my aging parents had moved there, and she started encouraging me to come there. Of course, Jim needed to become a Missouri resident before we could even apply for services. So after much thought, we took the plunge and moved in July of 2016, knowing we had no guarantee of services.”
Jim initially moved into a nursing home temporarily. “To be able to live with that decision, we drove 15 miles every day for four months to pick him up at noon, and 15 miles back in the evening. It was a long four months.” Finally, the DD funding came through, and Jim was able to move into a 2-person home run by Boone Supported Living. He has 1-1 and is able to go out during both the day shift and the evening shift, although it took them awhile to get that going. (Check out his Facebook page for a flavor of his activity – https://www.facebook.com/jim.waldrip.92?fref=pb&hc_location=friends_tab)
“Jim is by far in the best place he has ever been,” Brenda said. “What Jim is able to do now would never have happened in Illinois.”
10 Jul 2018
Carl DeBrodie case: Boone Supported Living's CEO says, "There are holes in the system".
KMIZ ABC 17
CEO Julie Walden lays out ideas on what YOU can do to help fix the holes.
05 Jun 2018
Gary Nolan highlights Boone Supported Living and the work they do for people with developmental disabilities
The Eagle 93.9 Talk Radio
Boone Supported Living makes flub, live, on-air…“What was our website again?”
23 March 2018
The Case Of Carl DeBrodie: Boone Supported Living CEO identifies problems with the system
KMIZ ABC 17
CEO Julie Walden says caseloads for governmental Support Coordinators are too high and unmanageable.
14 July 2017
Senator Caleb Rowden puts names and faces to people being helped by Boone Supported Living
KMIZ ABC 17
Following the Carl DeBrodie incident, Senator Caleb Rowden visits Boone Supported Living to see how ISL’s are supposed to operate.
11 July 2017
MARF highlights Boone Supported Living as they work with Legislators
Senator Rowden visits Boone Supported Living to see how the lives of Missourians living with disabilities are being improved every day.
10 July 2017
Carl DeBrodie case: Boone Supported Living Gives Hope to Families with Loved Ones in Care.
KMIZ ABC 17
CEO and Founder Julie Walden states that multiple systems must have failed in Carl’s case because typical governmental oversight of people in care is far more thorough.
25 May 2017