In her seven years on the job as a Direct Support Person, Friedman has been promoted multiple times. She advocates in Delaware County and across the nation, representing the community during Shift Happens training, teaching direct support staff about the positive approach taken here.
Friedman received her award at the ANCOR Annual Conference in Washington D.C., a few weeks ago. Friedman attended the conference with Hope Townsend, program director at Arkville.
“We attended the conference and did some sightseeing,” said Friedman. “I’m honored by the award and pleased to see that The Arc is ahead of the game, light years ahead in their work with the disabled.”
In Washington, the DelArc representatives engaged in dialogue as to how to improve services for the approximately 300 disabled in Delaware County.
“The Conference lasted three days, and everyone here at home pitched in, covering me and Hope on the job, so we could attend,” said Friedman. “I received the DSP Award at the main ceremony.”
Friedman, along with Townsend, also listened in on seminars and took the time to walk around the Capitol and visit the Smithsonian.
Back in Delaware County, Friedman, was recently found championing students Gerry and Kelly at the Creating Art Together program offered at the Catskill Mountain Artisans Guild in Margaretville. The program has been going on for two years with art classes held on Friday mornings.
“Gerry, the comedian, singer, and dancer, is also artistic,” said Friedman, “and Kelly, our friendly, thoughtful Kelly, has really grown over the last 5 years.”
Many of the projects learned at the program can be practiced throughout the week. Artist Nat Thomas assists teaching the students new techniques in a comfortable social environment. When asked why they like coming to Creating Art Together, both Gerry and Kelly said, “Because it makes us feel happy.”
“The only Friday I’ve missed was the Friday I was in Washington D.C.” said Friedman.