UCP is growing! We’re opening a second brokerage (more info coming soon), which means that we have several exciting openings.
First up: we're hiring for two "Brokerage" Directors. One will be the Director of our long-standing Brokerage (UCP Connections), and the other will be the Director our new Brokerage (UCP Mentors).
Brokerage Directors take the lead on strategic planning, community-building, contracts, and engagement with State and local partners.
They are responsible for the effective operation of an In-Home Support Services Brokerage, including case management services, daily operations, community partnerships, financial oversight, team cohesion, and organizational structure.
These positions close on July 21st, 2021 at 5pm.
FROM THE DESK OF ANN COFFEY, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
It’s March of 2021. This means that COVID-19 has been with us for a year.
What a year it’s been; exhausting, terrifying, and traumatic come to mind.
It's also been a time full of gratitude. The UCP community has come together and stood strong in our resiliency.
It’s been a time for growth and streamlining, as we seek new ways to complete our work; new ways to connect; new ways to find balance and purpose.
The COVID-19 vaccine is here, although not all of us are currently eligible or will choose to receive it. Scheduling has proven difficult. Inequity has been highlighted. Nevertheless, there is a light at the end of this tunnel … and I can finally say … the light is not coming from a train. It’s sunlight.
Change—good change—is on the horizon. We’re starting to envision a new future.
Folks are wondering when we’ll reopen the UCP Oregon office. I don’t have firm dates yet, or any concrete answers.
But I can tell you that we’ll base our decision (s) on:
Whew! That’s a lot to consider. We are committed to maintaining the health and safety of UCP customers and employees, to the very best of our ability.
So, I suppose I am saying: hang on. Clarity is forming. Mask up. Remain socially distanced. Assist customers to gain vaccinations if they choose to. Stay healthy and safe—we’re not at the finish line yet.
Thank you to everyone involved in keeping UCP safe. We will look back on this and feel proud. Proud to rise to the occasion among all the variables that have made this a most complex and unique year.
As you may already know, our Executive Director (Ann Coffey) contributes to statewide disability projects all the time.
What you might not know is that Ann was on the steering committee for a national policy project.
The 2021 “Case For Inclusion” was created through a partnership between the national UCP organization, and ANCOR (The American Network of Community Options and Resources).
The report details some of the extreme difficulties faced by groups like UCP Oregon, as they dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The report also lists specific actions that the White House and Congress can take to ensure the sustainability of community-based supports.
Way to go, Ann and everyone else who worked on the project!
It is with a heavy heart that we announce changes to UCP Oregon’s Supported Employment Department (“Employment Solutions”).
Employment Solutions supports adults who experience disabilities to find and keep fulfilling jobs in the community. As you might imagine, COVID-19 has had a huge effect on this department.
In March of 2020, most of the department’s employed customers lost their jobs due to COVID-19 restrictions, with very few able to be rehired in a contracting economy.
Over the intervening months, we have attempted to keep the department as whole as possible. We applied for (and received) COVID-19 relief grants. But three layoffs were necessary in July, and we are now forced to restructure again.
Department changes include:
These changes will have a tremendous impact on UCP Oregon’s community. We are saying goodbye to some of our best and brightest, including our Employment Solutions Director, Melissa Miller. Read more about Melissa, and her contributions, here.
Affected customers and employees have been informed, but if you have questions or need support, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
As many of you know, UCP has been forced to implement layoffs in our Supported Employment Department.
One of the biggest changes was that the department’s Director, Melissa Miller, was laid off. We’d like to take a moment to celebrate and honor Melissa’s achievements at UCP.
Melissa started at UCP more than 17 years ago. She applied to be a “Roommate” (a live-in caregiver), hoping to get a job and a place to live. As she says, though, she ended up finding “a family, a community and a mission.”
That mission? As Melissa says, it’s to “PUSH THE ENVELOPE and NEVER STOP PUSHING for those who need support.”
Over the years, Melissa worked in many of UCP’s departments, supporting and interacting with hundreds of customers and employees. She met her husband at UCP, and started her own family. Meanwhile, Melissa was creating a new department, Employment Solutions, and serving as a statewide advocate and voice.
As UCP’s Executive Director, Ann Coffey says, “Melissa is bold, fearless, opinionated, hard-working, and full of gusto. She moves mountains. And she will continue to push the envelope for equity and justice, wherever she may roam.”
Melissa’s right-hand woman, Nicole Vivanco, will step into a new role as manager of the Employment Solutions team.
Learn more about recent changes to Employment Solutions here.
Our customers are our best role models during this time of uncertainty. They're the real experts at navigating barriers, exceptions, and challenges. They already know how to wade deep into unknown waters, deal with uncertainty, and find coping mechanisms.
Our employees are, as always, rising to any challenge, whether it's finding personal protective gear and emergency supplies, or finding ways to help customers socialize at a distance. It is clear that we ALL take the business of providing human services seriously.
One day, one customer, one step at a time.
Ann Coffey, Executive Director
We have also partnered with a few local provider agencies to acquire a few deals. And, as needed, our Executive Director, Ann, makes weekly trips in her truck to pick up and distribute orders.
And we have, so far, been able to keep our employees "whole."
We still need your help, though... more than ever! Thanks for your support!
We want to share a wonderful story. Last Friday, our Family Support Director (Katherine) woke up to a frantic phone call from a mom who is raising a child with cerebral palsy. He has a trach and vent, but they didn't have enough supplies to get them through the weekend.
Katherine jumped into instant action. She was able to share a week's worth of medical supplies from her family's personal stash.
Then she connected the mom to a new supply company, a new nursing agency, several other resources... and, of course, to UCP's Family Support Department!
Now mom and son could have a stress-free weekend and look forward to more support, connection and supplies. As Katherine says, "I love my job! I love my life!"
An Exploration into Physical Activity Resources for Oregonians with Disabilities
Thursday May 7, 12-1pm PST
Adventure 1: National Center on Health, Physical Activity and Disability and Adaptive Sports NW
Monday May 11, 12-1pm PST
Adventure 2: Move it! Oregon’s Specialty Athletic Trainings and OSU Extensive Services
Wednesday May 13, 12-1pm PST
Adventure 3: Dance! Yoga! Something for everyone--plus, national and state online resources
FROM THE DESK OF ANN COFFEY, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Hello, UCP employees, customers, families, board members, and community partners.
I am pleased to announce UCP Oregon’s Agency goals for the years 2020-2023:
These goals are customer-driven, and were created using the feedback from customer focus groups, UCP Oregon employees, UCP Oregon’s leadership team, and Board of Directors.
I’ve been employed by UCP since 2003, and been privileged to participate in strategic planning throughout the years. However, these goals are particularly near and dear to my heart, as they have incorporated customer feedback in a manner which supports UCP’s values of self-direction like never before. I look forward to supporting all of us to implement them in our work lives!
Ann Coffey, Executive Director