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Oklahoma State University
Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council

ORC - Serving All Oklahomans with Disabilities

2016-2017 Success Stories

Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council's new operational year began on October 1st, 2016. The following success stories provide examples of the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation's counseling services and support and Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council's oversight to help people gain employment. The last names of those helped are not provided to respect their privacy.You can also take a look at last year's success stories here.

See all the locations of ORC/DRS Success Stories by for several years by viewing our maps!

DRS Client:

Mark

Disability: PTSD & Bipolar

Mark
Services:
Transportation; College Training (books, fees and tuition); Clothing; Counseling and Guidance; Information and Referral Services
 
The Story:
During the beginning of 2003, Mark was receiving post-traumatic stress therapy at the Oklahoma City VA Medical Center. While there, he completed an application for help from DRS. In 2003 DRS paid for him to return to college to complete a bachelor's degree. He attended the University of Central Oklahoma and completed his undergraduate degree in sociology. He then went on to earn a Master of Education degree in Adult Education, Training and Development, receiving that degree in December 2007.
 
With his new degrees, he began teaching as an adjunct instructor at UCO in the spring 2007 semester, and recently retired after 11 years of teaching. He mostly taught a student success course for students on academic probation. Since he is now retired from teaching, he is working part-time at Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance of Oklahoma as a peer support group specialist. 

Mark comments... 

  • “I am now able to help others with mental health disorders reach a satisfying level of accomplishment and a better quality of life.”
  • “I am grateful for the help I received from the taxpayers of Oklahoma -- your investment in me has given me joy and empowered me to lead a happy and productive life.”

DRS Client:

Zakary

Disability: Shoulder / Head / Physical

Zakary
Services:
College Training (books, fees and tuition); Counseling and Guidance; Information and Referral Services; Rent and utility bills; Computer; Assistive Technology (Dragon Naturally Speaking)
 
The Story:

Zakary works for the Bank of the Panhandle in Guymon, OK as a loan officer.  He completed his degree from OSU in Agriculture Economics and DRS assisted him with school finances and a computer to help him with writing for college.  Due to an accident that occurred to his shoulder and hand, he had lost some utilization of his right hand and writing was very difficult at this time.  

He was raised in Guymon, Oklahoma and has a close relationship with the community.  After he graduated from OSU, he received a call from the bank and he began working.  He has been there a little over a year now and is doing well financially and physically to only be 23 years old.  He especially loves that he is giving back to the community of Guymon who supported him when he needed it the most.

One barrier that DRS helped him overcome, that he noted changed his life was the boost of confidence.  He had to re learn the basics of everyday living, typing, writing and shaking hands.  DRS helped him get out of the funk he was in.  

Zakary states... 

  • “I am giving back to the community and the kids.”
  • “This community is good for young kids and I am glad to be a part of something so great.”
  • “I get to help improve everyone’s lives.”
  • “You step in my office and I get you back on track.”
  • “The Bank took a chance on me.”
  • “I am building key networking opportunities and I have aspirations of being a VP of a Bank one day.”
  • “I have overcome pain, challenged myself and accepted the challenge so that I won’t use my situation as a reason, but a chance to be better.”
  • “Organization is my key to success.”
     

DRS Client:

Carlos

Disability: Quadriplegia (Incomplete C6)

Carlos
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Transportation; Clothing; College Training; Wheelchair modified van; Assistive Technology (Dragon Naturally Speaking and Wheelchair); Assessment; Information and Referral Services; Drivers Training

The Story:
Carlos is a peer mentor working at OU Medical Center as a volunteer while he is currently working on obtaining his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. He has certifications in peer mentoring with OU Medical Center, United Spinal and Reeve Foundation.  
 
Carlos was involved in a car accident in 2013 and was hit by a drunk driver, which left him paralyzed. He had an injury of an incomplete C6, but is able to utilize his upper body. He competes for Cross Fit and spends his spare time at school and in the gym.  Carlos received services from the Comanche and Apache Tribal VR programs as well as DRS.  He utilized both agencies for his financial burden with tuition and books for school at Cameron University, his wheelchair parts, his modified van and driving school. Carlos has a huge amount of support from his family and he continues to be grateful and have a positive attitude. Both of his parents were able to go back to work once he was out of the hospital and working with the VR programs. 

Carlos states... 

  • “DRS and the VR Tribal programs helped me regain his independence.”
  • “You don’t understand what having independence is until you don’t have it.”
  • “I don’t feel trapped and longer and I am getting out there.”
  • “I have different challenges every single day, but it is like teaching an old dog new tricks.”
  • “There is more to life and this experience has humbled me.”

DRS Client: Nathan

Disability: Speech Impediment (Stuttering)

Nathan
Services:

Transportation; College Training; Tools and Equipment; Information and Referral Services; Assistance with food and housing

The Story:
Nathan is a Family Medicine Physician’s Assistant at Variety Care in Oklahoma City. Variety Care is a facility that takes patients with no insurance. They have a passion of giving back to the community. Nathan completed 15 months of rotations all over the state of Oklahoma and during that time, DRS helped him get to those locations with financial assistance. DRS Counselor, Sheila Denson played a part in Nathan’s success.  DRS paid for his undergraduate degree and PA School. He graduated with honors in November 2016 from Oklahoma State University. He received his licensed credentials soon after.  
 
Nathan overcame barriers with finances with DRS assistance. DRS gave him confidence and ability to accomplish his goals. He has a great support system with family and friends.

Nathan commented:

  • “These experiences have changed my life.”
  • “I am able to support myself and I have a well-paying job.”
  • “I am able to do something with my life.”
  • “I really care about caring for people and have a passion for caring for others.”
  • “I always put others before myself.”
  • “The best thing to do while learning to live with a disability, is accept it.”

DRS Client: Michael

Disability: Vision loss - Cataracts

Michael
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Physical Restoration (cataract surgery); Employment and Retention; Information and Referral Services

The Story:

Michael was getting to where he couldn’t see to read or drive and that is the way he makes a living.  Driving an 18 wheeler is what he has done for 30 years and he was faced with a DOT physical and he wasn’t going to pass it for not being able to see.  This was going to be devastation in the family if he wasn’t able to keep his job.  He was told from the doctor that he had cataracts and that he had to have surgery.  With such financial burdens that he already had from his wife’s health, he was then given the number to Gladys Monroe at the DRS office in Ada, OK.  The Eye Dr. in Lindsay referred Michael to Gladys in the Visual Services office and they were terrific with helping.  Michael was pleased with the services and he passed the DOT physical before the deadline.  This means that the cataract surgery and services began and ended in 3 months.  He also got to keep his job.  

Michael offers the following statements:

  • “DRS got me the help I needed and now I have 20/20 vision.”
  • “I am able to continue to work.”
  • “Thank you everyone at the Ada Oklahoma office.” 
  • “It has helped me continue my life, continue my work and provide for my wife.” 
  • “It has also provided us a financial freedom.” 
  • “Gladys Monroe is an awesome little lady.”

DRS Client: Molly

Disability: Hearing Loss

Molly
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Clothing allowance; Adaptive Equipment – hearing aids; Employment and Retention; Information and Referral Services

The Story:

Molly has been working at the Stephens County Courthouse for the past 15 + years as a court reporter.  About 4 years ago, she learned from a family member about DRS services and she had noticed her hearing was leaving her rapidly.  She feared losing her job as it is important to hear while being a court reporter.  With the help of the Laura Prater, DRS VR Counselor in the Altus office, Molly is now able to hear again.  She received audible hearing aids for both ears and overcame huge barriers involving work with her hearing.

Molly commented:

  • “It is just wonderful!”
  • “It has made all the difference in the world.”
  • “Without the hearing aids, there is no way that I can do my job.”
  • “DRS was a tremendous help and I am so grateful for the services offered to me.”

DRS Client: Kidada

Disability: Schizophrenia

Kidada
Services:

Training; Counseling and Guidance; Transportation for a bus pass; Clothing Allowance; Vocational Evaluation; Uniforms; Job Readiness Training; Supported Employment – Job Coach; Assessment; Information and Referral Services

The Story:

Kidada has been working at McDonald’s in Ada, OK. She looked for 3 years by herself and finally got some assistance through Brenda Brashear at DRS through a job coach.  At that time, Not Just Jobs helped her with applications, interviews and on the job training.  Her job coach, Jamie, went with her to McDonalds to assist with her interview.  McDonalds hired her on the spot and she then went to a training provided by then for 3 days where the job coach, Jamie was there to assist her with her employment needs for learning the new job. 

Kidada had some barriers to overcome with her disability.  She didn’t have transportation and DRS along with the job coach taught her how to take a cab and bus, how to dress, groom, take care of herself.  During her time of job search, DRS collaborated with Workforce, North Hills Center and DHS for Kidada.  They provided her classes about stress, hygiene, missing work, coping skills, medical services and of course food stamps.  They gave her a folder of ideas to help with her stress.

Kidada wants to share these comments:

  • "They taught me life skills in general. I felt inhibited because I don’t concentrate with a lot of people around and they taught me techniques to reduce the stress and triggers that I may have.”  
  • “I received Career Pathways training and it was a great learning tool for me.”
  • "Obtaining employment through DRS has helped me improve the quality of my life and my confidence is better.” 
  • “I couldn’t reach my family before and now I am able to buy things.” 
  • “I take the cab more and I take better care of myself now.” 
  • “I enjoy being independent and taking care of myself.” 

DRS Client: Giovanni

Disability: Learning Disability

Giovanni
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Supported Employment; Job Readiness Training; Information and Referral Services

The Story:

Giovanni began his journey with DRS as a transition student from Owasso Public Schools.  There, he learned how to work through the work site programs at the High School.  He has done many jobs at the school, but he really likes his current job.  He has several different job titles and he enjoys changing it up at work.  He states “it keeps me busy.”

The Tulsa DRS office, counselor, Virginal Luevano, was his counselor and he was pleased with the services and the opportunity to work.  Giovanni received supported employment services through a job coach at job connections.  A barrier that Giovanni has overcome is to learn to be a team worker.  He is currently working at Taco Bueno where he will celebrate his one year anniversary in July 2017 in Owasso.  Giovanni has many skills of being a runner, drive-thru cashier, restaurant cashier and janitorial.

Giovanni states:

  • "Work has changed my whole lifestyle, behavior and personality.” 
  • “I have a lot of people I work with all day and I am very happy.”  

DRS Client: Zane

Disability: Autism

Zane
Services:

On-The-Job Training; Counseling and Guidance; Vocational Evaluation; Job Readiness Training; Job Placement; Assessment; Information and Referral Services; Drivers Training

The Story:

Zane started his career for the City of Watonga doing School Work Study in the Watonga High School his senior year under the transition program. Zane had 2 counselors during his time at DRS, but the end counselor was Amy Martin in the Weatherford office. The family was impressed with how wonderful the coordination with the schools, the community and DRS were. Kathy Allen with Watonga High School found Zane the job to work with in School Work Study and he really enjoyed it.

He transitioned into the job from the experience and guidance he received from both the schools and DRS.  His boss, Donnie liked how he worked and hired him after graduation in May 2016. He has been working seasonal up until now.  He has been hired on full time with the City of Watonga as the Park Maintenance.  Some barriers that Zane overcame were that he now has his driver’s license and he is able to drive to and from work, he has gained a lot of confidence and he works hard and keeps going and keeps trying.  Zane will be receiving a raise soon from the City of Watonga for proving himself and doing such great work.  The community has embraced Zane and he is well liked all over town.

Zane states…

  • “I can buy my own food.” 
  • “I can buy my mom flowers.”  
  • "I bought my own truck.” 
  • "I am showing my own independence.”
  • “DRS has helped me a lot.”
  • According to his mom and dad, “Zane has gained so much self-confidence and social skills.”  We don’t have to give him spending money anymore, he probably has more than I do in his wallet now.”

DRS Client: Christi

Disability: Bipolar, Anxiety, ADHD

Christi

 

Christi at the Bakery

Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Clothing; Transportation; School Uniforms; Supplies and Kits for School; Books; Occupational Training at OSU-Okmulgee; Job Placement; Information and Referral Services

The Story:

Christi was diagnosed with anxiety back in 2008 and she had extreme panic attacks to where she wouldn’t leave her house.  Between the Mental Health Counselor, medications and DRS (in particular Krista), she finally got her anxiety and other disorders under control.  She attended Culinary Tech School at OSU-Okmulgee and graduated with honors in December 2016 with a 3.7 GPA.  Christi states that “Krista McKelvin, her DRS Counselor was a huge help.”

OSU-Okmulgee helped her find the job since it is part of class, but without DRS help, Christi would not have been able to afford the schooling plus all of the supplies and kits needed.  A few barriers that Christi has overcome are her social anxiety, communication and she has learned the triggers to help her copy on her own now.  Christi is employed where she did her internship for 12 weeks at Reasor’s Bakery in Tulsa.  She is an Assistant Manager and is working on becoming the Manager of the bakery soon. 

Christi is very excited to be a success story for Department of Rehabilitation Services (DRS).

She comments...

  • “It’s helped me out financially. I am saving up for a house and have some financial freedom now.”
  • "If I want to get it, I get it now.”
  • “My anxiety is better and I can now talk to strangers.”  

DRS Client: Erica

Disability: Intellectual Disability

EricaErica and Troylene
Services:

On the job training; Counseling and Guidance; Clothing; Job Readiness Training; Job Placement; Information and Referral Services

The Story:

Erica graduated from Meeker High School and soon began working as a para professional for the 5 Star Inter-local Coop and her worksite is Meeker Public Schools.  Her Special Education teacher, Troylene Kinnamon asked if she was interested in the position, she interviewed and then was asked to fill the opening as an on-the-job training.  Erica exceeded all expectations and has been hired as a full time employee.  Erica was terrified of losing benefits, but with the help of counseling from the Social Security Benefits Counselor and Brenda Gossett at DRS, she maintains her ability to be successfully employed and loves her job.

Erica says...

  • “I enjoy my job. It’s been pretty good.”
  • “I like working with the kids and I enjoy being a para.”
  • "It makes me happy and I get to still see my friends working and gaining knowledge.”

Employer: 5 Star Inter local co-op

Troylene is Erica's supervisor.

Quote from the supervisor:

  • “Erica has done a beautiful job advocating for herself.”
  • “She is in charge of cooking and life skills with the kids in the class where she is teaching them how to read it, cook it, set it up and clean it up."
  • "She uses the technique of I do it, we do it, you do it.”  
  • “She is invaluable in what she has done.”
  • “She knows what to do, she is never late, works every day, loves her job, never absent, has self-pride and is very responsible.”
  • “I love that she is a part of a community that wants to see her be successful.”  

DRS Client: Charles

Disability: Diabetic and Dyslexia

Charles and his wife
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Information and Referral Services; Uniforms; Tools; College Training; Books; Medical Devices

The Story:
Charles is currently employed at Northeastern Health Services as a 1st year resident in Tahlequah, OK. He graduated in 2012 with a B.S. in Biology from Cameron University in Lawton, OK. He will graduate on May 13th, 2017 from OSU-CHS in Tulsa with his Doctorate in Osteopathy. “DRS helped me meet my educational goals, which allowed me to match into the Family Medicine Program in Tahlequah after doing clinical rotations in family medicine.” 
 
“DRS has also helped me overcome financial barriers to education, alerting me to resources that are available for people with dyslexia and help obtaining medical supplies.” 
 
Charles has a huge supporter, his wife, also pictured. He states “through education, I was able to reach my goal of becoming a Doctor of Osteopathy. I will be able to support my family financially and give back to the underserved in Oklahoma by practicing in rural areas.”

DRS Client: Cheryl

Disability: Legally Blind -- Retinal Detachment, not able to be restored

Cheryl
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; College Training; ABLE Training, Physical Restoration (glasses, sunglasses and rolling, folding cane), Adaptive Equipment (after shock headset, adaptive accessories for kitchen, labeler, braille machine, color identifier); Job Readiness Training; Job Placement; Assistive Technology (Laptop with JAWS and Zoom text); Information and Referral Services

The Story:

Cheryl is working as a Specialist of the Blind for Department of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) in the Visual Services Division and loves her job. She started with DRS 2 years ago with Judy Booklover and then most recently Shirota Hearne as her Visual Services Counselors. She has also been assisted by Deborah Trout (Orientation and Mobility) and Pam Holloway (encouraged Cheryl to attend ABLE Training). A barrier that she feels that she has overcome from being employed at DRS and having been a client is that she gets to see visually impaired people employed. She loves having all of the exciting new technology available to enable her reading and to share this information with others.

Cheryl will graduate in May 2018 from Langston University in OKC with her Masters in Rehabilitation Counseling and Visual Rehabilitation Teaching. She has been employed by DRS Visual Services Division since December 28, 2016.

Cheryl enthusiastically says, “Elaine Boykin played a large role in where I am today and she fought for me to get my Masters. I ended up in her classes and then ended up doing a practicum at DRS and then, I was hired. She states “I credit my success to Elaine as she pushed me and has been a great mentor.”

DRS Client: Bruce

Disability: Hard of Hearing – 90% deaf without hearing aids

Bruce
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; On The Job Training; Transportation (1 month bus pass); Vocational Evaluation; Uniforms; Adaptive Equipment (hearing aids); Job Readiness Training; Supported Employment; Information and Referral Services

The Story:
Bruce is very excited to be a success story for the Department of Rehabilitation Services (DRS). Jill Oliver from the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Unit at DRS assisted Bruce in his success and Jeff Morton at Dale Rogers Training Center helped Bruce find a job that fit his skillset. Bruce has had many years’ experience as a Certified Nursing Assistant, but could not find that job in, or around, the OKC area. Dale Rogers Training Center spent time assisting Bruce with his resumé and finding a different job suitable for him. Jeff served as Bruce’s job coach while he was at Dale Rogers Training Center. Bruce is now employed at OU Medical Center as a Housekeeper and has been there for 19 months. He is doing well and loves his job. Bruce stated, “Dale Rogers held my hand through the whole process.”
 
Bruce states that one of the barriers he overcame was “a lot of people wouldn’t hire me because of my barriers with hearing and I am so grateful for the chance the OU Medical Center provided me as well as the push that Dale Rogers and DRS gave me.” During his time at DRS, he received community resource referrals from Dale Rogers, DHS and Sally Quillian. Bruce states “my life is better, I feel better about myself in general. I was getting depressed and now I have more money to do things I want to do. I am independent and that is the most important thing to me. And, I have given up my Social Security Disability and I am doing great.” 
 

DRS Client: Bonnie

Disability: Depression and Anxiety

Bonnie
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Training; Occupational Training; Information and Referral Services

The Story:
Bonnie received assistance from the Cherokee National Vocational Rehabilitation (CNVR) Program with the cost of education, providing guidance and counseling, giving encouragement and "helping believe in myself". She says, "I had barriers to employment such as instability, low self-esteem, and financial dependence on my husband, state programs, tribal programs and limited work skills." 

"CNVR and DRS worked together in paying for my education. Claremore Indian Hospital and Indian Health Services provided me with an internship. I also received assistance from the Housing Authority of Cherokee Nation and the Cherokee Nation Day work Program." Bonnie continues “I am employed in the career I trained for, which is mammography. I am self-sufficient financially, emotionally and physically stable, have a better home life. I am working towards home ownership and working in a job that I love.”  Bonnie is currently employed through Bailey Medical Center in Owasso. 

DRS Client: Harvey

Disability: Paraplegic (C6-7)

Harvey
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Adaptive Equipment; Information and Referral Services

The Story:
Harvey was injured in an automobile accident in 1983 at the age of 34. As you can imagine, the loss of mobility at that age can be a challenging obstacle to overcome. Harvey didn’t give up on life and went on to obtain his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Sociology.     
 
Harvey states, “I was able to maintain my position with help and by receiving a wheelchair. And, I was able to get to, and from, work independently.”  
 
“I am now able to get out more and be more mobile.” The Choctaw Nation Vocational Rehabilitation (CNVR) program was able to assist Harvey with the purchase of a new wheelchair, which allowed him to remain employed as a Case Manager with the Choctaw Nation Housing Authority in Hugo, OK.  

DRS Client: Manuel aka "Fabian"

Disability: Cerebral Palsy

Fabian
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Adaptive Equipment; Drivers Training; Transportation; Clothing; Vocational Evaluation; Physical Restoration; Telecommunications; Vehicle Modifications; House Modifications; New Wheelchair; Job Readiness Training; Supported Employment; Assessment; Assistive Technology through ABLE Tech; Loan Program through ABLE Tech; Information and Referral Services; Workforce; DHS; Community Rehab Providers; Social Security; Driving Ambition, Inc. Drivers Training; Newby Vance; Hanger Prosthetics; Dan Lutz Drivers Training; Access United

The Story:
Fabian started with DRS as a junior in High School with Charles Nichols as his counselor.  He was assisted with transition services and modifications to his home. After Charles, Donna DeSalvo assisted with getting Embark services where he could utilize transportation. She helped with a job coach and Metro-Tech while he worked at summer school. Fabian states that “I then sat at home until I received a call from a new counselor, Renee Sansom, from the Hispanic Community Outreach Program. Renee helped me with getting my vehicle modified to start driving, she helped me get a new wheelchair and to get in contact with Galt Foundation.  I worked with Galt for 2 ½ years until I got hired, August 2016. Kevin is now my newest counselor, who replaced Renee and he provided me constant counseling and guidance with my new position. Kevin helped me get things for my wheelchair and with a seating evaluations for different cushioning for the chair that I currently use. The end result is that I am employed after 15 years of services and ups and downs with DRS.”
 
“DRS helped me a lot. They got me more money. I am independent. I drive myself to, and from, work. I pay my own bills. DRS has given me self-worth. I am very grateful for DRS and their dedication. If it wasn’t for DRS, I wouldn’t be here. My mantra is 'Stay Positive and yes, you can!!'”

DRS Client: Mark

Disability: Juvenile Rhematoid Arthritis

 
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Information and Referral Services; Occupational Training

The Story:
Mark was diagnosed with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis when he was 6 years old and it took a big toll on his health. As a young adult he dedicated his life to learn all aspects of farm and ranch management but when he was in his late 20’s, he had farming accident that severely injured his back. After his accident he decided to change careers and with the aid and guidance provided by the Chickasaw Nation Vocational Rehabilitation Program he was able to obtain his Bachelor’s degree from East Central University. He is currently employed at a substance abuse treatment facility in Southeastern Oklahoma with his CADC-C certification and will soon acquire his HRCM II certification.
 
Mark states, “Without Chickasaw Nation Vocational Rehabilitation, my dream would have been, to be certain, only dust in the wind, Thank you.” 
 

DRS Client: Misty

Disability: Paraplegic (C6-7)

 
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Employment and Retention Services; Information and Referral Services

The Story: Misty came to the Chickasaw Nation Vocational Rehabilitation Department recently after receiving a left, below the knee, amputation due to diabetes. In October 2015, Misty developed the same condition (Charcot foot) on her right foot and spent several months in a wheelchair.  She was prescribed a CROW boot. She received services that allowed her to get the boot and continue working.

DRS Client: Micah

Disability: Down Syndrome

Micah
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Job Readiness Training; Job Placement; Information and Referral

The Story:
Micah was born with Down Syndrome. He applied for services after he graduated from high school and together with his counselor and the Chickasaw Nation Child Development Center they created a position in which Micah is responsible for cleaning the center’s large amount of laundry. Micah worked with job coaches for months to learn his new job and he is able to do his job on his own each day.
Micah states “I like my job. I have made a lot of friends”
 

DRS Client: Rachel

Disability: Hearing Loss

 
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Occupational Training; Information and Referral Services

The Story:

Rachel is a 21 year old citizen of the Chickasaw Nation. She came to the Chickasaw Nation Vocational Rehabilitation (CNVR) program requesting training for a career that would work with her hearing disability. Rachel went to school to be a Dental Assistant. She now works for the Chickasaw Nation Medical Center in the Dental Clinic. She states that she is very happy where she works and loves helping other Chickasaw citizens. She believes that CNVR gave her the boost she needed to follow her passion and achieve her goals. 

DRS Client:

Wanda

Disability: Macular Degeneration; Cataracts; Glaucoma; Diabetes

Wanda
Services:

Counseling and Guidance; Information and Referral; Adaptive Equipment; VS Rehab Teacher; Audiologist; Senior Citizens Hearing aid program from the School for the Deaf

The Story:
Wanda was diagnosed with Macular degeneration, glaucoma and diabetes about 13 years ago. Two and a half years ago, she had a stroke that affected her right side. In addition to her own health issues, her husband passed away. She has received services from Ani Severtsen from Visual Services. With Ani’s assistance, she received a talking clock, phones, microphones and buttons for appliances in the kitchen.  With the help of Medicaid, she has received grab bars and a shower chair. Wanda is a homemaker and received independent living skills, kitchen skills, cooking skills and she continues to learn different skills in the kitchen. She loves to bake and cook and has enjoyed learning how to cook independently. She utilizes the Oklahoma Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped to listen to books on tape. She absolutely enjoys this pasttime and loves her books.
 
Wanda states “My daughter Diana’s life has improved because I have supper ready for her when she gets home. I don’t get depressed anymore and, with the help of Ani, I have a better outlook about being blind.”
 
"Ani made it safer for me and now I know my limitations. The placement of things is very important and I am living a safer life and am able to speak out about my disability and what my needs are.”