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Shelley Nessman and Person Centred Planning March 2017

March 3, 2017

Hi everyone!

One of my core accountabilities at Spectrum comes under the umbrella term “Person Centred Planning” and I thought it would be fun to kick off a new year with a conversation about what it means here at Spectrum to be Person Centered and to commit to Person Centered Planning for each of the people we support.

I am struck by the diverse ways we think about and understand planning and person centeredness.  Conversations range from the Micro (This person would like a PATH done on this day and will invite her family and friends) to the Macro ( how do I ensure that we continue to be person centered in the face of pressures from the funder, the family and the community at large?).

I love this quote from a paper by Helen Sanderson and Associates:

“We all think about, and plan our lives in different ways. Some people have very clear ideas about what they want and how to achieve it, others take opportunities as they arise. Some people dream and then see how they can match their dreams to reality.
Sometimes it is useful to plan in a structured way, and person centred planning provides a family of approaches that can help do this. These approaches share common values and principles, and are used to answer two fundamental questions:

  • Who are you, and who are we in your life?
  • What can we do together to achieve a better life for you now, and in the future?

Person centred planning is a process of continual listening, and learning; focussed on what is important to someone now, and for the future; and acting upon this in alliance with their family and friends.
It is not simply a collection of new techniques for planning to replace Individual Program Planning. It is based on a completely different way of seeing and working with people with disabilities, which is fundamentally about sharing power and community inclusion.

~Helen Sanderson and Associates

Here’s a link to the entire article key features and styles.pdf

I am excited to think about the ways we can get every person here at Spectrum thinking about those two questions!  Imagine starting your day at work with a curious heart about who the person is and who we are~ and then deeply listening for clues and messages that answer the question “what can we do together to achieve a better life for you?”

What other questions are bubbling up for you?

In future articles I will be sharing some of my own experiences in planning with some of the people we support and posing more juicy questions about this subject.  Please share with me some of your wisdom and some of the stories you have about when planning works and what the challenges might be!

Let’s connect!