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Developmental Supports

Mark D. Elmore Center

10501 Lackman Road, Lenexa, KS 66219

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JCDS self advocates at Topeka statehouse for Push Day 2017

Johnson County Developmental Supports (JCDS) is the agency of Johnson County government that facilitates career and personal development for Johnson County residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The agency regularly serves more than 500 people each day through a broad array of community-based programs and supports.

Designated as Johnson County's Community Developmental Disabilities Organization (CDDO), JCDS also offers a single point of entry for those seeking DD services, determines eligibility for services, and coordinates a network of over 90 Johnson County providers.

Department News

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BOCC proclaim March 21 as World Down Syndrome Day in JoCo!
March 21, 2019

BOCC Proclamation for World Down Syndrome DayThe Johnson County Board of County Commissioners proclaimed March 21 World Down Syndrome Day in Johnson County. Allie Reim, who is served by JCDS, gave a moving speech followed by proud grandpa Ronnie Metsker who spoke about his grandson who has Down syndrome. Ronnie even showed off his different, brightly colored socks! 

We are thankful to the BOCC for their continued support for individuals in Johnson County with IDD.

World Down Syndrome Day is celebrated on the 21st day of the third month because it signifies the uniqueness of the triplication (trisomy) of the 21st chromosome that causes Down syndrome. Learn more about World Down Syndrome Day.

(Click photo to enlarge)

BOCC proclaim March as Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month in JoCo!
March 15, 2019

Developmental Disability Awareness Month Proclamation

March is Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. At the March 14, 2019 Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) Meeting, the BOCC gave a proclamation and JCDS Deputy Director Shelly May and Lena Middleton, who receives services through JCDS, were there to accept it. Lena gave a powerful and moving speech to the board and posed for pictures with Commissioners Eilert and Fast.

We want to thank the Board of Commissioners for their continued support for individuals with IDD in Johnson County!

(Click photo to enlarge).

Emerging Artist Brad Friedman's design wins statewide contest
July 22, 2019

Brad Friedman Design for InterHab Advocacy Day 2019

Please join us in congratulating JCDS Emerging Artist Brad Friedman who has won the InterHab t-shirt design contest!

InterHab is the state association in Kansas for service providers who support individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). Brad’s artwork was chosen after a statewide search for a design to be featured on t-shirts for Advocacy Day on March 26.

Advocacy Day is an annual event in Topeka for people with IDD, their families, friends, providers, and advocates to come together and meet with legislators to discuss issues that are important to the IDD community.

Brad is an active participant in our JCDS Emerging Artists program, and you can find more of his original work at art shows throughout the year.

We are so proud of Brad, and we are excited to wear the shirts featuring his design on Advocacy Day!

Mandy Flower hired as new CDDO director
March 4, 2019

Mandy Flower

We are pleased to announce that Mandy Flower is the new Johnson County CDDO director. Mandy replaces Shelly May who is now the deputy director of JCDS. Mandy will be starting with the CDDO on Monday, March 18, 2019.

Mandy has spent most of her life working in different capacities serving individuals with a developmental disability. For the past eight years, Mandy has been working with individuals in California. During this time, Mandy has been director of residential services for Southern California for People Creating Success (PCS).

At PCS, Mandy worked with a variety of consumers and oversaw supported living, independent living and group home living options. Mandy is well versed in Medicaid, as well as a variety of state-funded resources that enable individuals to live as independently as possible. Currently, Mandy is consumer services supervisor for the Antelope Valley Branch of the North Los Angeles County Regional Center. In this role, Mandy has worked in collaboration with service providers, consumers and families to ensure that every consumer receives services in compliance with the Lanterman Act and Medi-Cal requirements. Mandy also has been instrumental in the implementation of the Self-Determination Program and works with legislative teams in an effort to raises wages and funding for the service provider community. 
A Kansas native; Mandy received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas and also holds two master’s degrees from Wichita State University. While in Kansas, Mandy worked for a residential provider in the Cowley County area and also in management at a residential facility for children with autism and other special needs.  Mandy looks forward to the opportunity to return to Kansas to utilize the knowledge and experience she has gained in California to help benefit the Johnson County community. When Mandy is not working, she enjoys spending time with her family, being outdoors, and is excited to attend her first Kansas City Chiefs game. 

Fulfilling a drive to drive
July 19, 2017

How did Drew, Ryan, Cory and Tyler reach their goal of getting their driver’s license? Angela Walsh-Fisher, a JCDS community employment specialist, recalls how the idea got off the ground.

“At one of our self-advocacy meetings, when we asked our group what they would like to advocate for in their own lives, a majority said they wanted to learn to drive,” said Walsh. “Before we left I promised them that I would make some calls to see what I could find out.”

Those calls led Walsh to Josh Smith, program director for Transportation at Johnson County Community College and Vanessa Fernandez, a JCCC Driver’s Education instructor. Fernandez was able to take the JCCC one-day, 8-hour course, and split it into four separate sessions. The result was a program that contained shorter class times with the curriculum delivered at a slower pace that includes testing accommodations. The amount of behind-the-wheel training is determined by Fernandez for each student.

Once Walsh and Fernandez finalized the class structure, they held an informational meeting in March 2017 to explain the program. More than 50 people attended the meeting and the two offered classes quickly filled up.

Fernandez is pleased with how the class has turned out and is glad she can help people get a driver’s license who may not have been able to before this program.

“I’m very happy with who I put on the road,” said Fernandez. “They deserve to drive and they do a good job.”

This course will be offered in September and information is available online on page 84 for the Fall 2017 Continuing Education Catalog.


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Upcoming Events

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Tue, 08/27/2019 - 5:30pm

Developmental Supports Governing Board

Tue, 09/24/2019 - 5:30pm

Developmental Supports Governing Board

Tue, 10/22/2019 - 5:30pm

Developmental Supports Governing Board

Tue, 11/19/2019 - 5:30pm

Developmental Supports Governing Board

Tue, 01/28/2020 - 5:30pm

Developmental Supports Governing Board