By Laurie Ritter and Natasha Sigoloff
In May 2017 Laurie Paris, from Randolph County Developmental Disability Services (RCDDS), was hired as the case manager for the individuals participating in the BCFR Supported Living program. This change comes from a recent federal rule that prohibits agencies like BCFR from providing both case management and residential services to the same individual. BCFR asked the Department of Mental Health (DMH) to select an outside entity to provide case management services for the 43 individuals served in Supported Living, and RCDDS was selected. The individuals participating in Supported Living and their guardians were provided with choices of whom they would like their case management and residential services to be provided by.
Laurie has been a part of the social service field for more than 15 years with a background in foster care and adoption services all over the state of Missouri. She says that RCDDS strives to be “a safety net for families” and monitor services to ensure that the individuals served receive the supports that they need. “I see myself often playing the role of the observer, making sure that things are not missed within the background of an individual’s services,” says Laurie. Her dream job would be to start a center for women’s ministries which would provide free counseling services to those in need.
Laurie is originally from Kansas City and currently lives close to Columbia. When she’s not working with the persons participating in the Supported Living program, Laurie says she likes spending time with her husband of 29 years and their three children. “We enjoy camping, singing together, and riding motorcycles.” When asked what her favorite part of her job was, Laurie says “I love to work with people and advocate for the individuals and families that I work with.”
BCFR is excited for this new partnership with RCDDS. The two agencies are working together to continue to assist individuals served to thrive in their community, connect with others, and achieve their personal goals.