On My Own celebrates 20 years of service

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

On My Own, Inc. will celebrate their 20th anniversary Wednesday with a free lunch, facility tours, and home automation demonstrations from noon until 2 p.m. at their office located at 428 E. Highland Avenue, Nevada.

“Since our inception, our mission has been to empower people with disabilities to live as full and productive members of society,” Reyna Blakely said. “We provide services and programs to help individuals of all ages and disabilities maintain their independence so they may remain in their own homes.”

Wednesday’s event is open to the public and is free. Lunch will be provided and guests will be able to tour the facility and receive more information about On My Own.

On My Own was established by Jack and Sarah Brock in 1997 as a grant-funded center for independent living. Over the years they have expanded to cover Bates, Cedar, Hickory, and St. Clair counties and now provide consumer directed services, in-home agency-directed services, and most recently became an assistive technology demonstration site. They now serve more than 500 clients across a five county area.

On My Own currently employees 23 professional staff and 30 aides who provide clients with in-home daily living support.

Blakley added that On My Own’s professional staff have more than 500 years of combined experience.

Executive Director Jennifer Gundy said grant funding to On My Own’s center for independent living has been slashed by 41 percent prompting they layoff of two of the program’s four staff and has resulted in a waiting list to receive services.

The center for independent living program provides four core services — information and referral, advocacy, independent living, and peer support. Gundy said a fifth service — transition — was added a few years ago. The transition service helps high school graduates transition to the workforce or further education and adults transition from a nursing home back to their own home.

“On My Own would like to thank you for letting us serve you for the last 20 years and we look forward to serving you in the future,” Blakely said.

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