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What I'm Thankful For

It's Thanksgiving week around the InterHab office. What a great time for me to pause and note what I give thanks for. 

I'm thankful that our state is turning the corner away from harmful policy that served to further marginalize the needs of Kansans with intellectual and developmental disabilities. A majority of the legislators we have interacted with believe that providing services to persons with IDD is a core responsibility of our government. I'm very thankful that we have legislators in office who want to make progress on these critical issues. 

I'm thankful for our governor, and her young administration, who seek to engage in collaboration with community service providers. The only way we will fix the critical issues facing the IDD system, such as shortages in our DSP workforce, is through a strong government/community partnership. 

I'm thankful for my InterHab team, who somehow amplify the skills of four into what feels like the efforts of a dozen. We are small but mighty, and our team's endless sense of optimism never fails to recharge me. I am very grateful that they have chosen to share their talents with the members of InterHab. 

Speaking of which, I'm thankful for each and every member of InterHab. Their dedication to serving Kansans with IDD is inspiring. As I've toured our members this year, I have been reminded over and over again of the innovation occurring across our state. Our members truly are mission focused in helping Kansans with IDD to live as independently as possible in their communities of choice. 

Finally, I'm thankful for my little family, which added a 7-pound, 5-ounce bundle of joy in May. Theodore is now almost seven months old. He's healthy and happy, and he's a constant reminder to be thankful for what I have been given in life. 

I hope you have a very happy Thanksgiving and I hope it gives you occasion to stop and consider what you have to be thankful for. We are all blessed in so many ways. 

Fifty Remarkable Years

One of my favorite Christmas movies is Frank Capra's classic "It's a Wonderful Life". The movie's despondent main character, George Bailey, is afforded an unique opportunity to see what the world would be like if he'd never existed. His contributions to his world were profound, but not immediately evident, because of the subtle nature of the actions he'd taken over time. 

Recently, the world recognized the 50th anniversary of mankind's first steps on the moon. A remarkable event that is easy to acknowledge for its impact on history. However, despite the spectacle, did it really change the world for the better? 

I prefer the George Bailey approach to making our world better. That's what InterHab represents to me as I think back on our first 50 years. I know that the IDD system in Kansas would be profoundly different had it not been for the work of InterHab's members in pushing for a future defined by independence, inclusion, integration and productivity. 

Our collective work under the banner of InterHab has made our world a profoundly better place for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Our members' dedication can best be summed up by the George Bernard Shaw quote that, "You see things; and you say "Why?" But I dream of things that never were; and I say "Why not?"

When the Sky is the Limit

Update from the Executive Director: 

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