ResCare Direct Support Professional wins state award

Direct Support Professional Lettie Gentry accepts Indiana Association of Rehabilitation Facilities’ (INARF’s) Keystone Award for outstanding service to people with disabilities.

Direct Support Professional Lettie Gentry accepts Indiana Association of Rehabilitation Facilities’ (INARF’s) Keystone Award for outstanding service to people with disabilities.

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (April 25, 2014) – Swinging your partner to a call of “Do Si Do” may not sound like a big deal, but for over 20 years it has been an important part of life for individuals served by Direct Support Professional Lettie Gentry. When the father of a gentleman that Ms. Gentry served asked if his son could go square dancing, Ms. Gentry made it happen. The square dancing bug rubbed off on all his roommates and they now participate every week.

This is just one of the many ways Ms. Gentry champions new ideas to give others a better quality of living and why she received the Indiana Association of Rehabilitation Facilities (INARF) Keystone Award.

INARF represents providers of services to people with disabilities. Employers nominate employees for the award which is presented to the most outstanding direct support professional in the state. Winners are chosen based on their personal attributes and dedication to the mission of providing high quality services to support the aspirations of people with disabilities.

ResCare Executive Director Jeff Rubin nominated Ms. Gentry for her influence and devotion to her work.

“Since 1988, when Lettie started working in this home, she has led the way in building meaningful and productive activities in the community and advocating for those who have lived here,” said Mr. Rubin.

Ms. Gentry has been a direct support professional for 25 years.

Ms. Gentry has been a direct support professional for 25 years.

Ms. Gentry assists the individuals she serves in participating in other community activities like bowling, Bible study, art and a drum circle. Ms. Gentry also helps to arrange the summer camp activities, which range from swimming and hiking to arts and crafts.

“Being there and seeing them grow and their excitement when they do things that they’ve never done before, that’s the reward I get,” said Ms. Gentry.

To Ms. Gentry, supporting those in the home is not too different from caring for her own loved ones.

“I care about them like they are my family,” Ms. Gentry said. “Because they are. I guess that’s why I’ve felt it’s so important to continue doing this job over the years.”

By Josephine Lee