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The Ohio Legislature created a unique and vital resource for people with developmental disabilities in 1967 and that resource continues to be a lifelong support 50 years later.
Ohio's County Boards of Developmental Disabilities are celebrating their 50th Anniversary in 2017. The year-long theme - Always There - reflects the continuity of support, promotion of opportunity and history of partnership county boards have offered to the people they serve throughout the past, in the present and in the future.
Throughout the next year, the Belmont, Harrison and Noble County Boards of Developmental Disabilities (BHN Alliance) will be sharing stories of what people are achieving in their community.
"Our goal with any effort like this is to build awareness and understanding around what people with disabilities are achieving and how we are there to support their efforts," said BHN Alliance Superintendent Stephen Williams.
County Boards are responsible for the coordination and funding of quality supports and services people need. This relationship can begin at birth and continue throughout a person's entire life.
"We believe in the inherent right of all people to make their own decisions," Williams said. "Our mission then is to be there as a support as they seek what matters the most to them.
"What matters the most to each person is different and can include supports like early intervention for infants and toddlers with developmental delays; transition services to help young adults successfully move from school to work; job-related skill training, employment, personal growth, residential and transportation services.
The BHN Alliance is a partnership between the three county boards that share a person-centered approach to identifying, coordinating and delivering supports to more than 700 eligible children and adults in Belmont, Harrison and Noble counties.