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The Office of Developmental Programs (ODP) is a bureau within the Department of Public Welfare. They are responsible for the establishment of policy and regulations which govern the mental retardation community program. They also are the primary source of funding for the county Developmental Disabilities program. 

The values, articulated as principles in Everyday Lives: Making it Happen, set the direction for the service system. They provide standards for policy development, service design, and decision-making. They articulate the outcomes in person-centered terms that our system should achieve and they are a guide for personal action.


In all aspects of life including the services people receive, who provides supports, where to live and with whom, where to work, recreation and leisure activities, vacations, planning individualized day activities, and having support provided at home.


Over a person’s life including relationships, budgets, and how money is spent, supports and services they receive, medical issues, and planning.


Quality of life determined by people. People want quality supports and services to enable them to have the life that they want. When people pay for high-quality supports, people expect to get high quality.


Feeling secure that all changes in their lives are made only with their input and permission – “nothing about me without me.”


To be safe at home, work, school, and in their neighborhood, as well as in all other aspects of their lives. People want services that ensure individual health and safety without being overprotective or restricting them.


Being known for their individuality and being called by their name. Being respected by having the privacy of their mail, files, and history and being able to choose to be alone at times.


Relationships with family, partners, neighbors, community people such as pharmacists, hairstylists and grocers, support staff, and having friends they choose.


Freedom to have the life they want and to negotiate risk. People want others to use ‘People First’ language and to have freedom from labels. People with disabilities have the same rights afforded to all citizens. They want to exercise the freedom of choice, to associate with people they choose, to move from place to place, and to use complaint and appeal processes.


Freedom from poverty and having a chance to be successful in the life they choose. Living independently with sufficient support to be successful and having expanded opportunities for employment with supports provided as needed.


Being full citizens of the community, voting, working for pay or volunteering, participating in leisure and recreation activities, belonging to a religious community, owning or renting one’s own home, living among family and friends, and not being segregated. People want to be recognized for their abilities and gifts and to have dignity and status.


State and county government, together with support workers, provide the services and supports that people need when they need them and make sure that they don’t lose needed supports that they already have.


Mentoring people and families trained as mentors to help other people and families by providing information and working with them until they can do things on their own; experienced Supports Coordinators mentoring new Supports Coordinators; senior support staff mentoring new support staff, and individuals and families mentoring support staff.


Collaboration between the Office of Mental Retardation and other offices within the Department of Public Welfare and other state and federal departments. People want collaborative planning during times of transition. They also want a seamless system that bridges from education to people/services/systems that are involved with them.


Community integration in all aspects of a person’s life. People want to be able to use community resources, like banks and food stores, just as other people in the community do, without feeling left out because of a disability. Integration means both being in the community and having the opportunity to participate in all that the community has to offer; including generic resources that don’t label people as “special.”

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