Journeys, state of Tennessee celebrating 'Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month'
Posted: Mar. 12, 2018
It’s once again the time of year to recognize the valuable contributions made by individuals with disabilities who live, work, play, vote, volunteer and build relationships right here in Rutherford County and across the state!
That’s why Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam has named March 2018 “Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month,” according to a press release from the governor’s office.
“In Tennessee, we have a fundamental belief that all means all, so when we talk about increasing workforce opportunities, that covers everyone,” Haslam said, via the release.
Haslam noted that the Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (DIDD), working with the Department of Human Services and the Department of Economic and Community Development, has “worked really hard to put programs together to match employers with people with disabilities and appropriate skill level jobs.”
And it “is working,” Haslam said, adding that his administration and the Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities are focused on a common goal.
“Empowering those with disabilities to contribute their skills and relationships in our local communities,” he said.
On the local level, it is Murfreesboro-based non-profit organization Journeys in Community Living’s responsibility to provide supports for people with disabilities in Rutherford and Cannon Counties that lead them to getting employed, living in their own homes, volunteering and accessing healthcare, among other important goals.
The almost 50-year-old non-profit is committed to supporting adults with disabilities “in choosing and realizing their visions of where and how they live, work and socialize.”
Journeys is also celebrating “Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month” by recognizing the hard work of both its full- and part- time professional staff and the individuals it serves.
Haslam’s proclamation states that “Tennessee is committed to recognizing that every person, regardless of perceived ability, has valuable strengths; infinite capacity to learn and make decisions; and the capability to make important contributions to their communities when given opportunities to do so.”
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance available in Murfreesboro, Smyrna, and La Vergne
Posted: Feb. 26, 2018
It's tax time once again here in the U.S.
If you're looking for help filing your taxes and had a household income of less than $66,000 in 2017, then the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program may be for you!
VITA is a nationwide program that runs from the end of January through April 17.
IRS-certified volunteers prepare tax returns free of charge for individuals and families meeting the aforementioned income guidelines.
There are three locations available at which one can have his or her taxes completed. They are:
- Patterson Park Community Center (921 Mercury Blvd., Murfreesboro); Tax preparation is available Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Sundays from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
- Smyrna Public Library (400 Enon Springs Rd. W., Smyrna); Tax preparation is available Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
- La Vergne Public Library (5063 Murfreesboro Rd., La Vergne); Tax preparation is available Fridays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
For a list of items one should bring with them, along with more information about VITA, please visit http://www.yourlocalvita.org/.
WGNS COVERAGE: Partners in the Journey Event
Posted: Oct. 20, 2017
"The only disability we have is a negative attitude."
These are the inspiring words of HK Derryberry. On Tuesday Oct. 17, Journeys in Community Living hosted an event to bring awareness to their mission of enabling people with disabilities to live more fulfilling lives.
Journeys in Community Living is dedicated to improving the lives of those with disabilities. Their mission is to give those people the opportunity to participate in their communities, live in their own homes with the people they choose, work meaningful jobs, and live life healthy and secure. The event's purpose was to open minds and encourage people to be more aware.
The core message: All people are created equal, so treat others the way you wish to be treated. The speakers at Journeys' event were the dynamic duo HK Derryberry and Jim Bradford.
HK's life is a miracle. He was born 3 months premature in 1990 after his mother passed in an auto accident. Because of these tragic circumstances, HK was born blind, with cerebral palsy, and later, due to a stroke, lost the use of his arm.
However, in 1999, while in the care of his paternal grandmother, HK met the man who would change is life for the better. Local businessman Jim Bradford stopped by a Mrs. Winners, where HK's grandmother worked, for a cup of coffee.
Because his grandmother could not afford a sitter, HK would spend nine hours at the restaurant listening to the radio every weekend. Bradford approached HK on that October Saturday and the rest is history.
Jim Bradford welcomed HK into his life with his wife and two adult daughters and together they climbed ladders and jumped hurdles to get to where they are 18 years later motivating anyone they meet to be the best they can be. Since 2012, HK and Bradford have travelled the U.S making 175 appearances, 46 of which just this year, and touching the lives of 40,000 people with their story.
Three Journeys associates receive TNCO top honors
Posted: August 2, 2017
MURFREESBORO – Three individuals associated with Journeys in Community Living took top honors July 19 at the Tennessee Community Organization’s Awards of Excellence in Nashville.
The organization yearly honors leaders in the field, along with individuals who receive services. This year’s award ceremony is set to be held at the Embassy Suites on Century Boulevard in Nashville.
Among those being honored this year are Journeys’ direct support staff Betty Nelson; Community Day Director Kat Garrett; and person supported Dickie Newman.
Nelson was honored as “Outstanding DSP” for the Middle Tennessee Division, while Garrett will take home this year’s “Outstanding Manager” award. Newman will receive the “Individual Achievement Award.”
Those who receive the organization’s “Outstanding DSP” award have demonstrated their dedication to supporting adults with disabilities and serve as prime examples of what a DSP should strive to be.
Nelson, who was hired at Journeys in April 2004, was nominated by her coworkers for her sense of responsibility to the clients she serves, as well as her attention to detail.
“Over the past year, Betty has headed up a special activity every few weeks,” her nomination letter reads. “That includes the planning and implementation of agency-wide festive luncheons. Betty plans the menu along with persons supported and teaches them how to cook and prepare food, budget the funds appropriately and act as servers and waiters for others who are enjoying the luncheons.”
Nelson has also “made a special project of working with several of the persons supported with the most challenging behaviors,” the letter reads. “Because of her kind and patient interactions, Betty has achieved great success with several of these individuals. Betty helped one person with behaviors get a job at a local judge’s office, where the person performs filing and other clerical duties.”
The “Outstanding Manager” award goes to those individuals whose management skills make them a step above the rest.
Garrett, who has been employed by Journeys since May 2008, has helped develop a community program for participants that provides a meaningful day, while also building their “independence, skills and self-confidence,” her nomination letter reads.
“In the past year, Kat has grown the volunteer program from volunteering with two non-profit community agencies to volunteering with eleven non-profit agencies by meeting with the leaders of each organization, explaining Journeys’ program, and highlighting the abilities of the people who attend,” the letter reads.
TNCO’s “Individual Achievement” award honors those persons with disabilities who have made significant strides over the past year to improve their independence. Newman, for example, moved into a more independent living situation and was hired by Kroger to work part time, three times per week, according to his nomination letter.
“He did so well on his job that his job coach was able to fade her assistance, leaving Dickie to work productively under the supervision of his Kroger supervisors,” the letter reads. “Dickie then took the initiative to talk to Kroger about increasing his hours. The supervisors were so impressed by Dickie that they increased his work schedule from three days per week to five days per week, including weekends.”
Tennessee Community Organizations (TNCO) is a professional trade organization for home and community based providers to individuals with disabilities. Member agencies like Journeys provide supported employment, residential, personal assistance and other supportive services to these individuals.
Journeys in Community Living is committed to supporting adults with disabilities in choosing and realizing their visions of where and how they live, work and socialize.
Journeys' financial director graduates from United Way Catalyst Program
Posted: June 26, 2017
Congratulations are in order for Journeys in Community Living Financial Services Director Jim Robert after he graduated this past week from the Rutherford County United Way's 2017 Catalyst Program.
The program is designed to prepare individuals for non-profit board membership positions. Twenty-one individuals are selected to participate in the program from a pool of applicants.
Robert joined his fellow classmates on graduation day as they presented ideas to Murfreesboro Mayor Shane McFarlane to assist in solving various traffic issues across the city.
Robert is the second member of the Journeys family to graduate from the program. Mark Bell, IT and Development Coordinator graduated from the program in 2016.
Meagan Flippin, President and CEO for United Way, said, “United Way’s Catalyst is a unique program providing applicable, in-depth training on nonprofit volunteerism, particularly at a board or key leadership level. With volunteer leadership such an integral cornerstone to the success of the nonprofit sector, United Way is proud to be able to partner with Redstone Federal Credit Union to deliver this program to our community.”
Journeys serving as a collection site for UW 'Stuff the Bus' campaign
Posted: June 20, 2017
United Way's Stuff the Bus, presented by Hot Topic, is set for June-July 2017 to provide children with the supplies and confidence needed for a successful school year!
In order to help United Way collect school supply items for 5,000 children in Rutherford and Cannon counties, Journeys in Community Living is once again serving as a public collection site!
Drop off any school supplies between now and July 24, 2017! Journeys is located at 1130 Haley Rd., Murfreesboro, TN 37129.
Other collection sites available this year include:
- Atmos Energy (334 W. Lokey Ave, Murfreesboro)
- City Auto (1023 Bridge Ave, Murfreesboro)
- First Tennessee Bank (154 Cason Ln, Murfreesboro)
- First Tennessee Bank (808 Church St, 2877 Medical Center Parkway, Murfreesboro)
- First Tennessee Bank (305 W Northfield Blvd, Murfreesboro)
- First Tennessee Bank (123 W Thompson Ln, Murfreesboro)
- First Tennessee Bank (471 Sam Ridley Parkway West, Smyrna)
- First Tennessee Bank (5211 Murfreesboro Rd, Smyrna)
- Ford of Murfreesboro (1550 NW Broad St, Murfreesboro)
- Hawthorne Park South Apartments (220 Indian Park Dr, Murfreesboro)
- LaVergne City Hall (5093 Murfreesboro Rd, Murfreesboro)
- Murfreesboro City Schools Central Office (2552 S. Church St, Murfreesboro)
- Murfreesboro Electric (205 N Walnut St, Murfreesboro)
- Murfreesboro Water & Sewer (300 NW Broad St, Murfreesboro)
- Murfreesboro Young Professionals (Robin Seay @ 1535 W. Northfield Blvd, Suite 7, Murfreesboro)
- Once Upon A Child (1734 W. Northfield Blvd, Murfreesboro)
- Quinn's Mercantile (307 N. Spring St, Murfreesboro)
- Roscoe Brown, Inc. (959 N. Thompson Ln, Murfreesboro)
- State Farm - Agent Dana Womack (805 S. Church St, Suite 10, Murfreesboro)
- State Farm - Agent Jeannie Almond (125 Heritage Park Dr, Murfreesboro)
- State Farm - Agent Joel Laird (202 N Thompson Lane Suite E, Murfreesboro)
- State Farm - Agent Bill Hayes (136 S Lowry St, Smyrna)
- Toyota of Murfreesboro (3434 Bill Smith Dr, Murfreesboro)
- U.S. Bank (806 Medical Center Pkwy & 2504 Old Fort Pkwy, Murfreesboro)
- Wilson Bank & Trust ( 3110 Memorial Blvd, Murfreesboro)
- Wilson Bank & Trust (710 N.W. Broad St, Murfreesboro)
- Wilson Bank & Trust (2640 S. Church St, Murfreesboro)
- Wilson Bank & Trust (4195 Franklin Rd, Murfreesboro)
- Wilson Bank & Trust (210 Commerce St, Nashville)
- United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties (3050 Medical Center Pkwy, Floor 2, Murfreesboro)
OUR TAKE: Journeys proud of David Price, city of Murfreesboro for establishing 'Miracle Field' (Video courtesy NBC Nightly News)
Posted: May 9, 2017
MURFREESBORO - Journeys staff is very proud to see a new baseball field designed for those with disabilities opening up in Murfreesboro.
It's all thanks to Murfreesboro-native turned Boston Red Sox Star David Price and the City of Murfreesboro. Check out the special report from NBC Nightly News below for more information!
It's 'Payback' time in Middle Tennessee
Posted: May 1, 2017
MURFREESBORO - The Big Payback is returning this Wednesday and Journeys is excited to take part in this monumental event for the third year in a row.
The online "annual giving day," hosted by The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, celebrates Middle Tennessee’s spirit of generosity and supports the life-changing work of area nonprofits like Journeys.
Donations can be made to organizations by visiting www.TheBigPayback.org.
The 24-hour event kicks off at midnight and helps organizations raise much-needed funds, while also bringing awareness to pressing needs throughout Middle Tennessee.
Journeys is also scheduled to participate in a special celebration of The Big Payback on Wednesday at Cannonsburg Village in Murfreesboro between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Cash and check donations can be accepted at Journeys' booth at the "Big Payback Rutherford Rally."
"The Rutherford and Cannon County community will come together to stand behind the community's nonprofit sector," a news release concerning the rally states. "Nonprofits from around the community will gather to showcase their work and mission. Music, food trucks, giveaways, special performance and a BIG surprise. The Pep Rally takes place at noon...bring your sign and toot your organization at the noon pep rally (big enough for the media to notice)!"
Gifts made to participating organizations during The Big Payback are amplified by incentives and awards and may help Journeys qualify for special prizes and bonuses throughout the day.
Since its inception in 2014, Middle Tennessee’s annual day of giving has raised more than $6.75 million for nearly 800 area nonprofits, including schools and religious institutions.
We hope you’ll support Journeys and our mission to support adults with disabilities in choosing and realizing their visions of where and how they live, work and socialize!
For more information, contact us at 615-890-4389 or visit www.TheBigPayback.org. We thank you for your support!
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