November 2018 Following a year-long preparation effort by a committee of dedicated staff, which included the submission of self-surveys on both our compliance with CQL’s “Basic Assurances” and “Shared Values,” CCDS paid host to two staff from CQL during the week of October 22nd for our re-accreditation review. During their four days at the agency, the CQL staff engaged in a number of accreditation activities. In addition to the review of multiple standards, reports, and other documentation, CQL staff met with the re-accreditation committee to conduct an in-depth review of our compliance with “Basic Assurances.” Two separate luncheon meetings with both individuals supported and direct support professionals were facilitated by the CQL staff to help them to determine our overall culture of person-centeredness as well as whether or not we adequately captured our “Shared Values.” The visit included “Personal Outcome Measures” interviews conducted by CQL with an individual we support residentially as well as one who lives in the community. The highlight of the week was a day-long stakeholders meeting on Thursday where individuals, family members, government officials, DSPs, CSPs, clinical staff and managers met to develop our next four year plan to advance person-centered excellence. On Friday morning this plan was presented to the CQL staff and we were awarded another four year accreditation as an agency of person-centered excellence. We have established three “dreams” or goals we hope to meet over the next four years: --Individuals will be empowered to pursue the life they want by having the flexibility of and accountability to resources, utilizing both paid and non-paid support systems. This dream allows individuals to achieve their goals and the personal vision they have for their lives by minimizing barriers and increasing choice; --CCDS will employ and retain qualified, well-trained staff who are empowered to offer quality, flexible services to the individuals we support, and who feel appreciated, valued and supported. The best quality of services can be delivered when the staff who provide these services have received all the necessary training to equip them to respond to all situations, are empowered to provide flexible and necessary supports and feel that they are vital to the achievement of the agency mission; and, --Every individual will be a member of their community, have a valuable role within their personally defined community and have a strong natural support network. When people are valued members of their community, they are safer, healthier, happier and empowered to live the lives they want. Our agency and our communities are stronger when people with disabilities have active and valued roles. We are extremely proud and grateful too all of our staff. Their efforts over the past four years to establish person-centered excellence were best summarized by the lead CQL staff who said that we “get it.” We do indeed.