5 Support Services You Can Access with the Help of a Support Coordination Agency & NJ DDD
NJ DDD works with various service providers in order to help individuals with special needs live fulfilling lives, establish friendships and peer relationships, and thrive in their communities. What are these services and how do you access them? In this blog post, we outline five main support services so you have all the details.
New Jersey Department of Developmental Disabilities (NJ DDD) works with many service providers, and support coordination agencies connect individuals with special needs to those providers. Both organizations work together to ensure that every individual receives the right support services.
The Person-Centered Planning Tool (PCPT) and Individualized Service Plan (ISP) are two key planning documents that your chosen support coordination will fill out alongside your family and loved one. These documents help outline your loved one’s service plan and depict what kind of resources your loved one needs.
Your chosen support coordination agency will then work with you to identify the most relevant and impactful resources tailored to your loved one’s life. Under a commitment to individualized care, your loved one will receive the specific supports and services needed to enhance their quality of life and foster independence.
This blog will outline five important services that your loved one can access through NJ DDD, and discuss how your chosen support coordination agency can connect your family to the resources that will help your loved one to thrive.
5 Main Support Services
#1 – Assistive Technology
Assistive technology aims to enhance the independence and daily functioning of individuals with disabilities through the use of specialized tools, devices, and software. These technologies are designed to bridge the gap between an individual’s abilities and the demands of their environment. From communication devices for non-verbal individuals to adaptive tools for mobility, assistive technology encompasses a wide range of solutions.
Support coordination agencies play a crucial role in connecting individuals with disabilities to assistive technology services. Your support coordinator will work closely with your loved one and your family to understand their specific needs and challenges. Through this collaborative process, your support coordinator can identify the most suitable assistive technologies that align with your loved one’s goals and requirements. This process will involve coordinating assessments with assistive technology specialists that are approved by NJ DDD, who will then evaluate your loved one’s abilities and recommend tailored solutions.
#2 – Behavioral Supports
Behavioral supports are designed to address and manage challenging behaviors. They aim to understand the root causes of these behaviors and implement strategies to promote positive alternatives, enhance communication, and improve overall quality of life. The first few steps in behavioral support for an individual will be a behavioral assessment, then the development of a behavior support plan, and also the dissemination of that plan.
Your support coordinator will collaborate closely with your loved one and family to assess and understand the specific challenges faced by your loved one. Then, your support coordinator will seek the right behavioral support provider through NJ DDD for the necessary services. This collaborative effort helps create individualized plans that focus on addressing behavioral concerns while considering your loved one’s unique needs and preferences.
#3 – Day Habilitation
Day habilitation refers to organized activities and services provided to individuals with disabilities during the day, with the primary goal of promoting skill development, socialization, and community engagement. These programs are designed to offer a structured and supportive environment where individuals can participate in various activities tailored to their interests, needs, and abilities.
Your chosen support coordination agency is connected to day habilitation providers in your area and will coordinate enrollment for your loved one, ensuring that the necessary accommodations are in place. Some of the day habilitation programs that your loved one may enjoy include:
- Sports/fitness events
- Health fairs
- Money management
- Personal hygiene
By facilitating access to day habilitation, your chosen support coordination agency can contribute significantly to the social, emotional, and cognitive development of your loved one. These programs not only provide opportunities for skill enhancement but also create a sense of community and belonging, establish and strengthen peer relationships and friendships, and foster greater independence and a fulfilling daily life.
#4 – Therapies
NJ DDD recognizes the importance of therapeutic services in enhancing the lives of individuals with disabilities and works with various therapy providers. These therapies encompass a range of specialized services aimed at addressing various aspects of an individual’s physical, cognitive, emotional, or communication needs. Common types of therapies include:
- Physical Therapy (PT): Focuses on improving mobility, strength, balance, and coordination. Physical therapists work with individuals to enhance their overall physical functioning, address musculoskeletal issues, and promote independence in daily activities.
- Occupational Therapy (OT): Concentrates on developing fine motor skills, self-care abilities, and sensory integration. Occupational therapists assist individuals in acquiring the skills necessary for daily living, such as dressing, grooming, and performing tasks related to work or school.
- Speech-Language Therapy (SLP): Aims to enhance communication skills, speech articulation, language comprehension, and social communication. Speech-language therapists work with individuals to address challenges in speech, language, and communication, promoting effective and meaningful interactions.
Your support coordinator can facilitate the coordination of therapy services by connecting your loved one to these therapies and ensuring that the chosen therapies align with your loved one’s developmental objectives. They assist in navigating the administrative aspects of therapy services, such as scheduling appointments, obtaining necessary authorizations, and addressing any barriers that may arise.
#5 – Employment Options
NJ DDD-approved employment services encompass a range of supports designed to assist individuals in finding, securing, and maintaining meaningful employment. These services aim to match individuals’ skills, interests, and goals with suitable job opportunities, fostering a sense of purpose, financial independence, and social inclusion.
Some of the employment services your loved one can access through NJ DDD include:
- Supported Employment: This service provides ongoing support to individuals with disabilities in competitive, integrated work settings. Support coordinators work closely with individuals to identify their skills and interests, and then connect them with employers who can provide suitable job opportunities. Ongoing support is provided to ensure success in the workplace.
- Pre-Vocational Programs: These services are designed to prepare individuals for future employment. They may include job exploration, work-based learning experiences, counseling on post-secondary education options, workplace readiness training, and instruction in self-advocacy.
- Vocational Rehabilitation Services: These services focus on enhancing the employability of individuals with disabilities through services such as job training, counseling, and job placement.
If employment is one of your loved one’s goals, your support coordinator will collaborate closely with your loved one and your family to identify their vocational goals, assess skills and interests, and develop a personalized plan. This plan serves as a roadmap for connecting your loved one with appropriate employment services.
In conclusion, your chosen support coordination agency, operating within the framework of NJ DDD services, plays a pivotal role in transforming challenges into opportunities for your loved one’s growth and inclusion. Through their dedication and commitment to individualized care, the best support coordination agencies go beyond connecting individuals and their families to crucial services to also empower individuals to lead fulfilling and happy lives.
Want to work with a trusted, proven support coordination agency? Contact Skylands Family Support today.