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John McMillin: Prospect Inc. visits highlight local good work

John McMillin • Updated Feb 13, 2018 at 6:00 PM

United Way of Wilson County and the Upper Cumberland had some incredible visitors this week from Prospect Inc., one our partner programs. Our visitors, Prospect clients and staff, came to tell us and several others in the community, such as the cities of Lebanon and Mt. Juliet, the Lebanon Municipal Airport, Wilson Bank & Trust at Walmart and Wilson County Promotions, thank you.

Prospect cares for people who have intellectual or developmental disabilities that have limited resources. Some people depend on Prospect for every aspect of their life. Others only depend on Prospect for a few things, or a few hours a day. In some instances, Prospect has saved a life. Ultimately, we give purpose to people who have disabilities.

Though hard to believe, donor support helped Prospect solve some complex issues, but it also enabled them do some things many of take for granted. Although the names have been changed to protect clients’ privacy, we want to tell you about a few examples. Prospect:

• helped Kathy secure a job at a grocery store, where she stocks groceries and sweeps. Prior to this job, Kathy had poor social skills and was unmotivated. Now Kathy smiles and holds her head high. She is proud of her job, and by working, she has been able to continue to make positive changes in her life. Her boss says that she’s respectful and polite and is the hardest worker they’ve had.

• saved Casey from a neglectful situation. Casey’s mother him took him to a doctor’s appointment and refused to pick him up. With the help of Prospect, Casey moved into a home with two other individuals and secured a job at local school. Casey learned skills such as cash management and time management which helped with his work at the school. He takes great pride in saving his money for the things he wants to buy. He has a laptop that he purchased with his own money and he uses it daily. He especially loves working and having a purpose!

• provided an alternative for Gail and Paul. Medical issues restricted Gail and Paul. They stayed at home much of the time in order to be near the resources needed to keep them healthy. Because of changes that we were able to implement, they are now able to get out of their house a few days a week and be more active in the community.

• showed 2-year-old Jenna’s caretaker how to adapt a toy. Because of limited hand and arm movement, Jenna wasn’t able to enjoy most of her interactive toys. One of our early interventionists showed her caretaker how to adapt an interactive toy so that Jenna could use her feet instead.  

We’re proud to be a partner with Prospect as we are with each of our programs, and we are happy to report their success from this last year. More than 300 people depend on Prospect’s 200 employees, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. That means over 35,000 hours of carefully planned and individualized services provided to some phenomenal people. Prospect clocked 565,100 miles traveled to meet the needs of some of the most exceptional people.

John McMillin is president of United Way of Wilson County and the Upper Cumberland. Email him at john@givetouwwc.org.

 

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