The MENTOR Network

DSP of the Day – 2014

In 2014, The MENTOR Network proudly celebrated our DSPs and other employees in a direct support role throughout the month of September. Please take a moment to meet these talented individuals!

September 30: Paula Kelly

Paula Kelly of REM Iowa is The MENTOR Network's DSP of the Week

Direct Support Professional
REM Iowa

“What I enjoy most about working in a direct support role is helping the individuals I serve achieve something they never thought possible,” says Paula, a Direct Support Professional. “I just love seeing the smiles on their faces and cheering them up when they feel down.”

September 29: Jennifer Fields

Jennifer-Fields

Direct Support Professional
Indiana MENTOR

“My favorite activity out in the community with the individuals I support is simply doing anything that involves them making their own choices,” says Jennifer, a Direct Support Professional. “Whether it is the grocery store or just going out to eat, I love seeing them be independent!”

September 26: Sharonda Ivey

Sharonda-Ivey

Life Skills Trainer
NeuroRestorative, Florida

“I enjoy helping participants reach their goals, and being there for them when they want to sit down and discuss their problems or frustrations,” says Sharonda, a Life Skills Trainer.

September 25: Janice Duttlinger

Janice-Duttlinger

Direct Support Professional
Indiana MENTOR

“I enjoy and get pleasure from knowing that I help enrich the lives of others,” says Janice, a Direct Support Professional.

 

September 24: Dawn Vetelino

Dawn Vetelino of NeuroRestorative Rhode Island is the DSP of the Day

Life Skills Trainer
NeuroRestorative Rhode Island

“I love having the opportunity to work with the program participants on a daily basis to share in their experience and help them achieve their goals,” says Dawn, a Life Skills Trainer. “I recently took a participant to a skate park where he had spent so much of his time years ago. From the excitement that he expressed and the memories that he shared at that moment, I knew I had made a difference in his life.”

September 23: Jaime Burke

The MENTOR Network's DSP of the Day is Jamie Burke of California MENTORDirect Support Professional
California MENTOR

“Working with our staff and the individuals we serve has made me feel like I’m part of an extended family,” says Jaime, a Direct Support Professional. “I really enjoy the challenges that arise every day; No two days are alike.”

September 22: Marilyn Skelton

The MENTOR Network's DSP of the Day is Marilyn Skelton of Indiana MENTORDirect Support Professional
Indiana MENTOR

“I love working and interacting with the individuals we serve,” says Marilyn, a Direct Support Professional. “Recently, I took one of the individuals I support out for her birthday to celebrate with some special one-on-one time. We went to a local restaurant and enjoyed her favorite meal—cheeseburgers and French fries!”

September 19: Couquette “Cissy” Denego

The MENTOR Network's DSP of the Day is Couquette Denego of California MENTORDirect Support Professional
California MENTOR

“What I enjoy most about being a DSP are the relationships I get to have with the staff and the individuals we support,” says Cissy, a Direct Support Professional. “When you work with a group of people—individuals served, DSPs, managers—as closely as we do five days out of the week, you become a part of this fun, silly and extraordinary family.”

September 18: Courtney Phillips

Courtney-Phillips

Life Skills Trainer
NeuroRestorative Pennsylvania

“I love making my residents smile and seeing the joy on their faces,” says Courtney, a Life Skills Trainer. “Knowing I make their life here a little easier with my humor is great.”

 

September 17: David Mitchell

The MENTOR Network's DSP of the Day is David Mitchell of Indiana MENTOR

Direct Support Professional
Indiana MENTOR

“I enjoy knowing that I am not just an employee, but a part of a network of caring; talented people who are making a difference in the lives of others,” says David, a Direct Support Professional.

September 16: La’Candra Jones

La'Candra-Jones

Direct Support Professional
Florida MENTOR

“I enjoy supporting others as they grow and learn new things,” says La’Candra, a Direct Support Professional. “Most of all, I love to see them smile.”

 

September 15: Nicole Williamson

DSP of the Day: Nicole Williamson, NeuroRestorative Rhode Island

Direct Support Professional
NeuroRestorative Rhode Island

“I like the human aspect of this job—getting to know participants, sharing experiences, and being a part of their lives is very rewarding!” says Nicole, a Life Skills Trainer. “We especially enjoy going out in the community. Recently, we coordinated all three of our houses to get together and go mini-golfing! Everyone loved being out together, laughing, joking and ribbing one another.”

September 12: Kristen Lazo

Kristen Lazo, Indiana MENTOR, DSP of the Day

Direct Support Professional
Indiana MENTOR

“I enjoy assisting the individuals I support and helping them work through specific issues they have been struggling with or ones they encounter on a day-to-day basis,” says Kristen, a Direct Support Professional. “Just knowing that I have made even a little bit of difference in the lives of the individuals we serve provides great satisfaction to me as a DSP.”

September 11: Kandie Viles

Kandie Viles, REM Iowa

Direct Support Professional
REM Iowa

“What I enjoy most about working in a direct support role is watching the guys I work with succeed in life,” says Kandie, a Direct Support Professional. “I enjoy seeing their confidence every time they overcome an obstacle and achieve one of their goals. I enjoy being a part of their everyday life and providing the encouragement that keeps them moving forward so they can achieve their full potential. My favorite thing to do out in the community is to take the guys I work with shopping for their groceries and supplies. I enjoy seeing the excitement on their faces as they proudly display their independence by following their shopping lists that they took part in creating, and the trust in their eyes knowing that I am there to assist them if needed.”

September 10: Mallory Lima

Mallory Lima of Georgia MENTOR is the DSP of the Day

Direct Support Professional
Georgia MENTOR

“It humbles me to provide support to those who need it,” says Mallory, a Direct Support Professional. “I enjoy taking part in the healing and caring process, and feel that compassion is a major component of that. For me, it is the simple outings that I enjoy the most. Going for a walk in the park with the individuals I support and sitting by the lake to feed the ducks is peaceful and relaxing.”

September 9: Jesika Anderson

Jesika-Anderson

Direct Support Professional
California MENTOR

“What I enjoy most about working in a direct support role is seeing the looks on the faces of the individuals I serve when I help them achieve their goals; the excitement is liberating,” says Jesika, a Direct Support Professional. “I especially love volunteering with them to deliver meals to the elderly through Meals on Wheels. It helps everyone involved.”

September 8: Kathy Pointer

The MENTOR Network's DSP of the Day

Direct Support Professional
REM Ohio

“I like interacting with the individuals we serve and helping them with daily activities,” says Kathy, a Direct Support Professional. “Recently, I enjoyed an outing to the Ottawa County Fair with two of the individuals I support. We were able to visit with a lot of people and eat our favorite fair foods.”

September 5: Christine Smith

Direct Support ProfessionalDSP of Day
Pennsylvania MENTOR

“I feel I have become a better person because of the individuals I provide support to,” says Christine, a Direct Support Professional. “I have learned so much from each one of them and enjoy our daily interactions. I especially enjoy taking them to Hillside Farms, where they can get homemade ice cream and see farm animals. It’s a very beautiful and peaceful place, and they seem to enjoy every aspect of the outing.”

September 4: Carolyn Debnam

Carolyn Debnam of NeuroRestorative, North Carolina is The MENTOR Network DSP of the Day

Direct Support Team Lead
NeuroRestorative, North Carolina

“By providing direct support services, I get to see the results of my work firsthand, which is very rewarding and life changing,” says Carolyn, a Team Lead. “One of my favorite things to do out in the community with the individuals I provide services to is to take a trip to the grocery store and together pick out items to help prepare their favorite dish.”

September 3: Juli Cross

Juli-Cross

Direct Support Professional
Arizona MENTOR

“I enjoy spending time with the individuals we serve, interacting with them and helping them be the best they can be,” says Juli, a Direct Support Professional. “I also enjoy cooking and preparing the weekly menu to satisfy their needs and preferences.”

September 2: Brianna Wheeler

Briana-Wheeler

Direct Support Professional
California MENTOR

“I am passionate about helping others,” says Briana, a Direct Support Professional. “I enjoy building relationships and the overall experience of working in direct care. The individuals I currently support really love being out in the community. They especially enjoy crafts and our trips to craft stores, where they get ideas for our next project.”

September 1: Brett Gardner

Brett-Gardner

Life Skills Trainer
NeuroRestorative Rhode Island

“It’s rewarding and such a joy to work with the individuals we support,” says Brett, a Life Skills Trainer. “As their advocates and motivators, we are able to positively impact their way of life. It’s in their achievements, no matter how big or small, where you feel how truly special it is to make a difference in someone’s life!”