Newsletter

Customer Story: Lawrence, an Artist at Work

 
Lawrence wearing a white button-down shirt and standing next to his red-cap mushroom sculptures at a gallery opening reception. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Lawrence wearing a white button-down shirt and standing next to his red-cap mushroom sculptures at a gallery opening reception. Photo courtesy of the artist.

When did you first start making art? How did you know you wanted to be an artist?

“I wanted to do [art] at school all the time, but [my teachers] took it away from me,” says Lawrence. Lawrence’s personal support worker Monica, who sits next to him during the interview, explains that art became a behavior tool used by teachers to reward and punish him. Lawrence’s mom, she notes, allowed Lawrence to draw at home.

What subjects and materials do you use in your artwork?

Through our conversation about his various works, Lawrence mentions brassieres, shorts, kites, fighter jet planes, Christmas trees and pine trees, flower bouquets, hard cover book bindings, and chandeliers. This is just the short list of subjects that inspire his large-scale sculptures as well as small-scale drawings.

Asked why he chooses these subjects, Lawrence says, “YouTube.” In addition to watching YouTube videos for inspiration, Monica shares that she and Lawrence go to Powell’s Books where Lawrence buys books on drawing and sculpting that help inspire his latest designs.

Lawrence shows us pages from a scrapbook with photos of his sculptural works, and it’s clear from looking at the photos that Lawrence is highly innovative in his material approach to interpreting subjects and transforming them into larger-than-life sized forms. For example, Lawrence shares that he hand-stitched fabric together to create a bra that supported breasts formed from flour-filled condoms. Monica laughs lighly as she notes,“they looked very real.”

Lawrence speaks candidly about the subjects and materials he uses in his artwork, revealing the process of an artist intent on understanding his subjects, working out what the parameters of their meaning are, and the impressions they leave upon him. When he sees shapes and forms that intrigue him, Lawrence devotes himself to work out how to modify and reiterate them in a way that he finds appealing and reflects his experience of them.

Monica highlights that much of Lawrence’s artwork is generated from the modification of subjects and materials, resulting in the creation of objects and images that push material and conceptual boundaries and expectations.

What interests you about depicting the human body, and in such a large-scale Format?

Lawrence started making his large-scale sculptures in school as an 18 or 19 year old. Freddy, a sculpture of a male figure, was created from rolled up tubes of paper to make his bone structure. The muscles were made from rolled up newspaper reinforced by fabric, Lawrence and Monica explain. The different parts of Freddy’s body were held together by duct tape and masking tape.

Lawrence becomes animated talking about the large human sculptures, sharing proudly that Freddy “had all his body parts.”

The clothing Lawrence chose for Freddy is significant, Monica says. “He had saggy pants,” Lawrence says, sitting up in his chair and grinning. Monica explains that Lawrence insisted on using new clothes, and Lawrence nods his head in agreement. “They were the largest pants I’ve ever seen,” says Monica about the pants Lawrence used to clothe Freddy. “He bought huge shoes too.”

 
Two red and white mushroom-shaped sculptures by Lawrence featured in an art exhibition. The larger mushroom has a bright red cap, and the smaller one has a bright red cap covered in white dots. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Two red and white mushroom-shaped sculptures by Lawrence featured in an art exhibition. The larger mushroom has a bright red cap, and the smaller one has a bright red cap covered in white dots. Photo courtesy of the artist.

 

How and why Do you Modify the materials you use to make art?

Before answering the question, Lawrence stands up and walks over to the shelf where he had placed a stack of sketchbooks before the interview began. He picks them up and brings them over to where we’re seated at a desk. He lays the sketchbooks on the table and begins flipping through pages, showing us the drawings that fill each book.

Lawrence and Monica explain that drawing is very important to Lawrence and his process as an artist. Pencil and color pencil are his primary medium. He favors Prisma color pencils, explaining that they have a wax component that make it easier to blend and burnish the lines and colors in his drawings.

Featured in the sketchbook are several drawings of bridges crossing rivers. The detailed drawings demonstrate a high-level of observation, precision, and lightness in touch. Lawrence’s combined creative and technical ability are evident in the reflections of ducks — the species of which could be easily identified in a bird book — floating peacefully in the rippling water under a bridge. The reflections of the bridge and the ducks in the water are remarkable. It would be easy to assume Lawrence drew these scenes from his observations and impressions made in person rather than from watching YouTube videos and reading books.

Why is it important for you to be able to make these changes to the subjects and materials you use?

Our conversation deviates from talking strictly about art into one about Lawrence as a person who is driven to make art because of who he is and the experiences that have shaped him.

Monica helps explain that it’s important to Lawrence that he get positive feedback about his artwork, as well as his physical appearance. It is important to him to present himself well and to be liked. He wants to be seen and known, she notes.

Lawrence and his sibling grew up in a home where they both experience tension because of how they chose to identify themselves. With time, Lawrence and sibling moved out of their family home and into their own respective apartments.

Like his sibling, Lawrence is learning to navigate his identity, sharing his desire to be accepted and valued for who he is and who he is becoming. He expresses feeling liberated by having the ability to explore his identity. Yet he is aware that not everyone celebrates people who identify the way he does, and some people may even take advantage of him.

After moving out of his family home and into his own apartment, Lawrence has learned more about himself, the kind of relationships he wants to be in and the friends he wants to have, and how to discern healthy relationships from unhealthy ones.

When Lawrence first lived on his own he had a small apartment and no real space to make his art, Monica shares. With time, Lawrence found a larger apartment with studio space that makes it easier for him to store, organize and find his art supplies, to do his research, and to create.

It is clear from the photos and drawings Lawrence brought to the interview that being able to make changes — in his art and in his life — is significant to him as an artist and as a person. Repetition, variation in scale, minute details, and mass quantities fascinate him. One might even call him obsessed. As humans, we can all become preoccupied by a particular thought, subject, person, or thing from time to time and have to learn how to work through those thought patterns. Lawrence’s artwork lends itself to thinking about how a creative, innovative person can commit themself to working out complex thoughts and feelings in a positive way through art making.

Through his artwork, Lawrence explores the many questions and observations he has about the world, the subjects that pique his interest—spurred on by his frequent and earnest questioning of “why is that?”

what inspires you as an artist?

“His creativity happens every hour of the day and only stops when the project is complete,” says Monica with a slight smile.

“He is inspired by the music he listens to when he’s making art,” says Monica. Lawrence says that music makes him want to create, run, and laugh. He especially likes listening to The Stylistics because he loves hearing the man sing falsetto, Lawrence shares. “[The voice] sounds feminine,” Lawrence says with a big smile. He is fascinated by the practice of having to concentrate on making a certain sound, or a particular range of sounds, in order to make it. “He had to practice to get that voice,” Lawrence exclaims, adding that he likes to sing while making art.

Are their other artists you like to spend time with and who inspire you?

Monica shares that about ten years ago Lawrence was a part of a community of artists that supported him on his artistic path. “Lawrence was always allowed to go early [to] and stay late [at the studio],” she says. “Artists stayed overnight while he finished works. He made lots of friends in the art community. Most of them were young college students who worked at Project Grow. It provided him with a different kind of freedom in expression.”

“The art community [Lawrence] used to have has dissipated,” Monica shares, noting that it became a more regimented program. While this art program Lawrence use to be a part of is desriable and beneficial to many of its participants, Lawrence decided it was no longer a good match for him.

Lawrence wearing a white button-down shirt and black pants stands in front of a white gallery wall with the decal “We." the title of the group exhibition he was featured in at the Portland Art Museum. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Lawrence wearing a white button-down shirt and black pants stands in front of a white gallery wall with the decal “We." the title of the group exhibition he was featured in at the Portland Art Museum. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Relationships and friendships are also important to Lawrence and his growth as an artist. At the Q Center, Lawrence met his friend Claire. He shares how Claire helps him remember that “I’m okay the way I am. It’s okay to be Lawrence. God has given [me] a wonderful talent.” Lawrence turns to Monica and asks her to confirm if Claire is his friend. Monica reassures him that Claire, and people like her, are indeed examples of a good friend. Have you exhibited your work before? Where?

Monica shares that Lawrence exhibited his work in a group exhibit called “WE.” at the Portland Art Museum. It was at this exhibit that someone bought his mushroom sculpture, she shares.

How Have you grown as an artist over time?

Over the past ten years, with the desire to read on the computer, Lawrence has taught himself how to read. He now is able to read the subtitles of the movies he watches. But his primary motivation for learning to read was to be able to do his own research for his art online. Now he can read books that describe different artistic techniques, as well as books about the subjects he likes to create through his art, such trees.

“[A]rt making provides a positive, healthy focus on channeling unpredictable creativity and a desire to be known,” shares Monica.

Have you exhibited your artwork before? Where?

Monica and Lawrence share that he exhibited his work in a group exhibition called “WE.” the Portland Art Museum. Monica turns to Lawrence to confirm that it was at this exhibit that he sold his mushroom sculpture. He nods in agreement.

How does it feel to exhibit your artwork?

“Really happy,” says Lawrence.

Do you sell your work? If someone wants to buy your artwork, how might they do that?

Monica and Lawrence both share that he sells his work through Art Store at Portland Art and Learning as well as through exhibitions, such as “WE.” at Portland Art Museum. “At the Art Store,” Monica explains, “they provide materials and Lawrence gets a percentage of the sale. He often uses this to buy art supplies in bulk from the store.”

 
Close-up image of a bouquet of blue flowers individually made of paper by Lawrence. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Close-up image of a bouquet of blue flowers individually made of paper by Lawrence. Photo courtesy of the artist.

 

Why do you like buying your art supplies in bulk?

Lawrence smiles at this question and says that he likes, “Livin’ large.”

Glue, pencils, paints, and puzzles are on his list of supplies he buys en masse. To help him cut down on costs, Monica has helped him organize his new apartment to make finding supplies easier so that he’s less inclined to buy a new set of paints or pencils.

Personal support workers, including Monica, help Lawrence stay organized, be creative, and save money. In the Marie Kondo era we find ourselves in, I believe most of us can appreciate the need for support in cleaning out our closets and organizing our things in order to de-clutter our lives and relieve stress.

Organization has helped Lawrence in several ways. He notes that “it’s hard to create when dealing with depression.” His supports help remind him to go on walks, exercise regularly, and to eat healthy, all of which help support his overall health and ability to create.

Lawrence casually leans against a building with his hands in his pockets, smiling at the camera. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Lawrence casually leans against a building with his hands in his pockets, smiling at the camera. Photo courtesy of the artist.

How have brokerage support services helped you live independently and pursue a career as an artist?

Brokerage support services and direct supports, such as Monica, have been instrumental in helping Lawrence implement a health and safety plan. His personal agent (PA) and personal support worker (PSW) help Lawrence set goals and outline steps to achieve them. Together they have worked on finding an apartment that suits Lawrence, activities that he will find fulfilling, opportunities to make money, and meeting people who appreciate him for him, like his friend Claire.

Lawrence desires to be in a loving relationship, have a family, and a home with an art studio, he says. He wants to be surrounded by creatives and people who look at and appreciate his art work. “Not weirdos and druggies,” quips Lawrence, who struggled to meet people and create healthy relationships when he first moved out of his family home and into his own apartment.

Monica shares that Lawrence is learning when it is appropriate to walk up to strangers on the street to ask for feedback, and when it is not. He is also learning, as many of us are, to take criticism better. “He always wants people to be happy, and to receive him well,” says Monica. Taking feedback—however constructive it is meant to be—can be hard.

“He’s a very black-and-white thinker,” says Monica. Throughout the interview Lawrence actively asks clarifying questions, often wondering “why is that?” in an effort to understand people’s behavior, thinking, as well as commentary about his artwork. For someone who might experience the world as black-and-white, Lawrence’s artwork is anything but clear cut, straightforward, or easily labeled and explained. Much like Lawrence asks, “why is that?” his artwork invites viewers to ask similar questions of his artwork. Why is that? A seemingly small and simple question prods one to explore the nuanced complexities of human existence, experience, and expression.

Lawrence smiling widely, clasping his hands together in front of fern and moss covered boulders on a nature walk. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Lawrence smiling widely, clasping his hands together in front of fern and moss covered boulders on a nature walk. Photo courtesy of the artist.

What is next for you in your artistic pursuits?

Lawrence was recently chosen to participate in the 2019 Field of View (FOV) Residency at Public Annex, which will provide him with studio space and access to an artist mentor to work on his project of choice. The residency also provides artists with a stipend and culminates in a gallery exhibition. The 2018 FOV residency was exhibited at Wollf Gallery in Southeast Portland in February 2018.

Lawrence is in the beginning stages of the residency and is still learning about what it will entail. He is excited to have the opportunity to make and share more art.

At Community Pathways, we look forward to seeing where the FOV residency takes Lawrence artistically and how it will help bolster the public’s knowledge about his artistic practice. We wish him the best!

For more information about Lawrence and his art work, please contact his PSW Monica Laws. Community Pathways can put you in contact with Lawrence and his support team. Call us at (503) 935-5243 ext. 228. To learn more about the 2019 FOV Residency, visit the Public Annex website.

June Newsletter

CPI Team - Olivia Kaaren Jessica Alicia.jpg

June Newsletter

Hello!
With June coming to a close, Community Pathways is excited to be celebrating the beginning of summer with our Seven Corners Collaborative partners at Community Vision, FACT Oregon, and the Oregon Council on Developmental Disabilities with a Summer Party this Wednesday, June 26th, 2-6pm.

Food, drinks, games, and raffle prize will be provided! The event is at Seven Corners (2475 SE Ladd Avenue). It's free and open to the public. We invite you to come celebrate with us!
As we enter our second year at the Seven Corners building, we are so grateful to collaborate with our wonderful building partners to help create a hub of information, resources, and support for individuals and families who experience disability.

We wish you all a fun, happy and safe summer!

Jennifer Santiago
Executive Director

CPI Team - John Linda Marek Alicia Olivia.jpg
 
Lawrence 2.jpg

Customer Story: Lawrence, an Artist at Work

Meet Lawrence, an artist living and working in Portland. Recently, Lawrence and his PSW Monica sat down with us to share about Lawrence's artistic practice, experience living in his own apartment, and the recent news of being chosen for the 2019 Field of View Residency at Public Annex. The residency will pay Lawrence, connect him with an artist mentor, and culminate in a gallery exhibition. Read the full interview with Lawrence here.

Visit Lawrence’s artist website here.

 

DD Advocacy - How to Get Involved

Contact us to learn how you can get involved in self-advocacy. Check out the Oregon Developmental Disability Coalition's top priorities when advocating for DD services here.

Personal Advocacy

  • Learning how to ask for what you want and need from your personal support worker(s), family, and personal agent.

  • Asking to change case managers/personal agent, the brokerage or case management entity that delivers support services to you, and goals in your ISP.

  • Visit OSAC's website and learn about the benefits of becoming a member (it's free!).

Community Advocacy

  • Getting involved in your community and advocating for the rights of people who experience disabilities in your area.

  • Get involved with the Self Advocates Taking Action group that meets ever Friday at Seven Corners, or join Build A Movement events.

Political Advocacy

  • Visiting the Oregon State Capitol to share your story with law makers (legislators) and why funding DD services matters to you and the community.

  • Visit the Oregon Developmental Disability Coalition's GO! Project website to learn more about advocating at the legislative level.

 

PSW EVV Orientation Sessions

The PSW Electronic Visit Verification system will start on July 16, 2019.

Learn more about the PSW Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) at

Register for a PSW EVV Orientation Session at

Spanish / Español
Vietnamese /Tiếng Việt
Russian /русский

Check out Frequently Asked Questions about the PSW EVV System.

 

Upcoming Events

Summer Party & Exhibition Opening at the Seven Corners Collaborative

  • Wednesday, June 26, 2-6pm

  • Summer party and exhibition opening featuring artist Mikayla Carpenter.

  • 2475 SE Ladd Avenue, 4th Floor, Portland, OR 97214

  • FREE and open to the public. Food and drinks provided. Raffle prizes.

  • Event Flyer (PDF)

  • For more information, contact Jill at jill@cvision.org


Oregon Brewer's Festival - Volunteer and support UCP as a beneficiary

  • Wednesday-Saturday, July 24-27, 2019

  • UCP needs 80 volunteers for the festival. Register using the link below and put "UCP Volunteer" in the comments section to count toward their volunteer total. As this year's "Charity of Choice" UCP can raise thousands toward its disability services!

  • Register at https://events-connect.com/obf/

2019 Division Clinton Street Fair & Parade

  • Saturday, July 24, 2019

    • Parade: 10:45am – 12pm

    • Street Fair: 10am – 5pm

  • Parade: SE 41st & Division to SE 26th & Clinton (watch the parade along SE Division St)

  • Street Fair: SE Clinton Street (SE 25th – 28th) and SE 26th Ave (SE Clinton to Division)

  • Fun community event in the Division/Clinton neighborhood we call home.

  • Learn more at https://www.divisionclinton.com/the-division-clinton-street-fair/

FACT Oregon's All Ability Tri4Youth

  • Saturday, August 2, 2019. Race starts at 9am.

  • Tualatin Hills Athletic Center in Beaverton, OR

  • Open to athletes of all abilities ages 8-26 years old

  • Register as an athlete, team, or volunteer at https://factoregon.org/tri4youth/

The 15th Annual Walk, Roll 'n' Run for UCP


Are there other events you'd like us to share with the community? Please let us know. We value your feedback. Thank you!

 

Our Mission

Community Pathways' mission is to assist adults with developmental disabilities to live empowered, self-determined lives through community connections.

Learn more About Us

May 2019 Newsletter

Portrait of Tino wearing a yellow hat and t-shirt.

Portrait of Tino wearing a yellow hat and t-shirt.

Customer Highlight

Tino’s Employment Story

Tino, a customer of Community Pathways, shares his experiences of getting a temporary seasonal job at Lowe's eight years ago and applying his strong work ethic to earn a full-time position he enjoys.

Read the full story.

 
Group photo of three advocates, smiling and holding a Support DD Services sign.

Group photo of three advocates, smiling and holding a Support DD Services sign.

Advocacy Update

DD Advocacy Day on May 7th

Join us at the next DD Advocacy Day in Salem on May 7th, 10am-2pm. The Oregon Developmental Disability Coalition’s GO! Project Advocacy Team will be available to give you information, training, and support. This is a great opportunity to meet advocates and learn about becoming an effective advocate for yourself and others who experience disabilities. Learn more.

 
Portraits of Zoe and Jacob, Community Pathways staff members and ONA Assessors.

Portraits of Zoe and Jacob, Community Pathways staff members and ONA Assessors.

Brokerage Update

Meet our ONA Assessors

Meet Community Pathways' four ONA Assessors. They are trained to complete the ONA based on information gathered in face-to-face meetings, file reviews, and through interviews with people who are central to an individual's life.

Meet our ONA Assessors

 

 

Health & Wellness Resources 


Health Plans and Providers

Mental Health

Safety & Emergency Alerts

Food and Shelter


Nutrition and Wellness

Share your health and wellness resource recommendations with us and the CPI community! Contact Kristine at (503) 935-5243 ext. 228 or kolson@communitypath.org

 

Get the latest news and updates! Join our mailing list to get the Community Pathways Newsletter emailed and/or mailed to your inbox! Sign up for the e-newsletter on the Home page.

Questions? Contact Kristine at kolson@communitypath.org or call (503) 935-5243 ext. 22

 

Community Pathways' mission is to assist people with disabilities to live empowered, self-determined lives through community connections.

Customer Highlight: Tino's Employment Story

I took my mom and dad’s word to heart and did it. I’m where I’m at now. I have a driver license, I have a job. I can go where I want—because I’m a grown up.
— Tino
Tino wearing his red Lowe’s vest at work, smiling and giving two thumbs up.

Tino wearing his red Lowe’s vest at work, smiling and giving two thumbs up.

Valentino, or Tino for short, sat down with us recently to share his employment story. For the past eight years, Tino has worked at Lowe’s where he currently serves as a full-time Delivery Load Puller and Assistant to the Delivery Driver. But Tino hasn’t always worked full-time at Lowe’s; he worked his way up to his current position over time.

Before he got his start at Lowe’s, Tino shares that he worked as a Busboy at Black Bear Diner for five years. He was motivated to start looking for a new job because, “I was not getting paid enough,” he says. With a goal to find a new job and earn more money, Tino sought out support from a job coach through supported employment services offered by United Cerebral Palsy (UCP). The job coach helped Tino learn how to search, apply, and interview for jobs, “because I didn’t know how,” he says.

With the job coach’s support, Tino began applying for jobs at Walmart. When he didn’t hear back from Walmart, Tino explains, he continued applying for positions online at Home Depot and Lowe’s. “Lowe’s jumped on it real fast and wanted an interview,” Tino says about his online application experience. “I was shocked at how fast it went.”

Tino was initially hired by Lowe’s as a Front End Seasonal Loader, working a few hours per week. After a period of time, with the encouragement of his co-workers, Tino asked his manager if he could work part-time and was soon promoted to a more permanent position. After working part-time for six months, Tino asked to work full-time, “because I wanted to do something more athletic, like lifting appliances.” At first, Tino was told no because there were no available positions at the time. When a Deliver Load Puller position opened up, a manager notified Tino directly. Tino applied that day and was hired for the full-time position he has today.

Promotions did not come immediately to Tino, as his story shows. He emphasizes that it took hard work and dedication to get to where he is today. It also required a willingness to speak up and ask for help in finding and interviewing for jobs, as well as asking for more responsibility on the job.

Portrait of Tino wearing a yellow baseball hat with a Pikachu pattern and a matching yellow t-shirt.

Portrait of Tino wearing a yellow baseball hat with a Pikachu pattern and a matching yellow t-shirt.

Persistence was key to Tino’s success in securing his first position as a temporary seasonal employee at Lowe’s, and then working his way up to a permanent full-time position. Even when he was not hired or did not get a promotion right away, Tino kept applying for jobs and following up with managers to show his interest in taking on more responsibility at work while still working hard at the job he had. By taking this approach, Tino gained the respect of his co-workers and managers who have become important sources of support to his professional growth and sense of belonging.

Tino notes that he was shy at first but remained persistent because he really wanted to work full-time and was confident in his work ethic. Asking for a promotion can be hard to do, Tino acknowledges. But he was encouraged by his family, friends, and co-workers who said, “You can do it. Go for it.”

Ask what kind of challenges he has experienced in regards to employment, Tino says the main challenge he faces at work is dealing with disgruntled customers--a challenge anyone working in retail and customer service can relate to. “[Customers] can be a little upset because they didn’t get what they wanted,” Tino says about customers who share negative feedback with him. Tino explains that his approach to handling these situations is to acknowledge the customer’s experience and to follow up with his managers so they can take action and make necessary changes.

Asked what job advice he would pass on to other employees, Tino shares that his dad taught him to, “Listen to your elders and have that hard work ethic,” adding that his dad tells him to, “find something to do instead of standing around. If you’re done [with a task] and don’t have something to do, pick up a broom and start sweeping.” Tino notes that he receives praise from his co-workers and managers for his work ethic and feels appreciated for his contributions to the team.

Asked what advice he has for employers, Tino says that it’s important for employers to show appreciation for their employees and to help people with their needs, “like if you say you need a little help or don’t understand something.” He acknowledges that not every single need can be accommodated but within reason Tino believes employers should be willing to train people who are willing to work hard and be a part of a team.

Tino advises employers that ongoing training for employees is important to their continued success at work, like when “you got a routine and something new crops up, and you need a little more training to handle the new situation.” He especially appreciates managers who are polite to their employees.

Tino wearing a yellow baseball hat and a yellow t-shirt with a red and white Pokemon ball logo.

Tino wearing a yellow baseball hat and a yellow t-shirt with a red and white Pokemon ball logo.

Being a part of a supportive work team has been an important part of Tino’s employment experience. “We’re a solid team [at Lowe’s],” he says, adding that he appreciates the support and encouragement he receives from his co-workers, many of whom he counts as friends. The need for support is mutual. Tino shares how he supports his co-workers by offering a listening ear and words of encouragement when they face their own challenges.

“Lowe’s is like a big ol’ family,” Tino says. “If I’m not okay, they’ll see what’s going on. They love me a lot and want me to be a front end loader again because I work so hard,” he adds, chuckling. “But I’m not going back to that,” he says with a grin.

Asked who supports him in his employment pursuits, Tino notes his first manager at Lowe’s was an important support because they helped train him as a seasonal employee. The manager eventually put in a good word for Tino with the other managers to be hired part-time. Tino gives the main credit to his parents (who are his foster mom and dad, he explains) for the support and encouragement they’ve provided him in working toward his goals. “I took my mom and dad’s word to heart and did it. I’m where I’m at now. I have a driver license, I have a job. I can go where I want—because I’m a grown up.”

Asked what’s ahead for him, Tino shares that he recently won a BBQ grill from entering a raffle prize at work. “I won the large prize,” he says, smiling. Now he’s looking forward to firing up the new grill once the weather gets nicer.

Congratulations, Tino! Keep up the good work.

 

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April Newsletter - Autism Acceptance

On World Autism Awareness Day, let us reaffirm our commitment to promote the full participation of all people with autism, and ensure they have the necessary support to be able to exercise their rights and fundamental freedoms.
— Secretary-General António Guterres, United Nations
 

World Autism Awareness and Acceptance

Did you know April 2nd is World Autism Awareness Day? And April is World Autism Awareness Month! Help us spread the word not simply about autism awareness but ACCEPTANCE this month by using #AutismAwareness19 #AutismAcceptance

 
 
 

Join DD Advocacy on April 30th

Join the upcoming GO! Project DD Advocacy Day at the Oregon State Capitol on April 30th. Members of Community Pathways’ team, Build A Movement participants, and advocates will be going. The GO! Project Advocacy Team will be available at the Capitol to give you information, training, and support before talking with legislators. Come be an advocate!

Learn more about the GO! Project and DD advocacy at www.oregoniddcoalition.org

Legislator Lookup - Find your legislators (State Senator and House Representative).

 
Three women standing together for a photo at the DD Advocacy Day at the Capitol building in Salem. The woman in the middle holds a sign with the words, “Support DD Services.” Photo taken by Oregon DD Coalition staff member.

Three women standing together for a photo at the DD Advocacy Day at the Capitol building in Salem. The woman in the middle holds a sign with the words, “Support DD Services.” Photo taken by Oregon DD Coalition staff member.

 
 

General Resource Guide

Find Direct Support (and clients)

Oregon Home Care Commission's (OHCC) Registry and Referral System - Find a provider to deliver direct support, or connect with an individual seeking direct support.

Food and Shelter 

211 Info - Find information on food shelters, warming/cooling centers, and shelters.

Oregon Food Bank's Food Finder - Find a food bank near you.

Portland Farmers Market - many of the markets accept SNAP benefits.

Health and Safety

Additional Needs Registry - Program for individuals in Portland and Multnomah county to share additional needs with 9-1-1 police and fire responders in case of emergencies.

Mental Health Crisis Lines

Clackamas County Crisis Line: (503) 655-8401

Multnomah County Crisis Line: (503) 988-4888

Washington County Crisis Line: (503) 291-9111

Arts and Culture 

Art Gallery at Seven Corners (2475 SE Ladd Avenue) is currently featuring works by artist Catherine Hill. Please check out the window gallery facing SE Division Street.

Public Annex - accessible urban farming and arts programming.

PHAME Academy - a school of the arts and performance serving adults with disabilities.

Social Events and Outdoor Activities

Off the Couch Events - socialization and educational program for differently-abled adults.

Adventure Without Limits - provides access to outdoor adventure to all people regardless of abilities, socio-economic gender, gender, ethnicity, or age.

Portland Parks and Recreation’s Adaptive & Inclusive Recreation - A program that offers, “community-based recreation activities and leisure services specially designed for children, teens, and adults who have a disability and/or special needs.”

Tech and Gaming

Guardian Games event calendar - Community calendar of gaming events.

Free Geek - provides volunteer opportunities and classes to enable digital access and education to create community that empowers people to realize their potential.

Fidgetech - A community for young adults on the autism spectrum to learn technologies, uncover interests and talents, develop skills, and achieve goals.

Do you have a resource you would like us to share? Email Kristine at kolson@communitypath.org or contact a personal agent. Thanks!

 

Spring Photo Gallery - Share your photos with us!

The CPI Team is so excited that it's finally Spring. April brings longer days, bluer skies, more frequent "sun breaks", and much needed doses of Vitamin D—and more time spent outside! To celebrate the coming of Spring, members of the CPI team are sharing their favorite Spring-time photos with us all. We hope these beautiful images inspire people to spend time outside and share their photos with us!

Want to share your own Spring photos with the community? Please do!

How to Submit Photos to the Community Pathways Newsletter:

  1. Send photos as .PNG or .JPEG file attachments to kolson@communitypath.org (Subject: Spring Photos for Newsletter).

  2. Please include a title or brief description of each photo, such as “Mt Hood View” or “St Johns Bridge”.

 

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Read the latest newsletters below by clicking “Read More”. Want to share your story and be featured in the newsletter or in a blog post on our website? Let us know. We’d love to hear from you.

March Newsletter

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News Topics

  • DD Awareness Month #DDAwareness19

  • Individual & Provider Highlight

  • DD Advocacy Days in Salem

  • Build A Movement on March 8th

  • Customer Survey on Gaming Events

  • Resources for Individuals & Providers

March is DD Awareness Month! 

Help us spread awareness about developmental disabilities this month and every month. Follow along with us on Facebook to help us support, advocate for, and empower individuals and families experiencing developmental disabilities in Oregon and beyond. Please use #DDAwareness19 and #support #advocate #empower in your own social media posts.

In honor of DD Awareness Month, we’re excited to be sharing the story of Chris and William, an individual and a provider team who volunteer together to collect and give hygiene products (toothbrushes, shampoo, soap, etc.) to people experiencing houselessness in Portland. Learn more about their community service by reading their story below.


Thanks for reading! Questions or comments? Let us know. Email Kristine at kolson@communitypath.org or call (503) 935-5243 ext. 228. We value your feedback.

Enjoy the rest of your week!
-Team Community Pathways


Image of artwork by Gary Murrel including the words #DDawareness19 and Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. Image Source: https://nacdd.org/ddam/

Image of artwork by Gary Murrel including the words #DDawareness19 and Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. Image Source: https://nacdd.org/ddam/


Feature Story: Individual and Provider Volunteer to Give Hygiene Products to Portland’s Houseless

Chris and William recently met with our staff to share their experiences as an individual-customer and support provider volunteering together to collect and give hygiene products to people experiencing houselessness in Portland.

William, who works as a direct support provider, explains that he started serving people living without a house in Portland by using his own money to buy hot meals for people who might not be able to afford one. With time, his attention shifted to hygiene products because he wanted to provide longer-lasting support to people. By providing people with hygiene products they are able to stay more clean and healthy despite not having direct access to basic amenities.

 Chris, who is involved in many service projects through his church, quickly joined William's efforts when he learned about them. The volunteer duo share that with the support of Chris’ church congregation they were able to collect enough hygiene products to fill over 100 small backpacks to create what Chris refers to as “hygiene packs.” Targeting areas around the Burnside Bridge and Pioneer Square, Chris says they were able to give most of the hygiene packs away in a short span of time. The pair note the high demand for hygiene products among people living without a house in Portland highlights the larger housing crisis the City is experiencing.

Asked if they are still collecting products, or interested in continuing this project together, Chris and William both say yes. They would like to continue providing support to their community in this way, and welcome donations and support in their efforts.

Asked if he’s working on other service projects, as well, Chris shares that he regularly volunteers with his church. Primarily, he helps sew and assemble sanitary pads that are donated by the church to an organization in Africa that provides support to women in need. As an aside, William points out that it would be helpful to include disposable sanitary pads in the hygiene packs they make for people living in Portland.

What products do Chris and William currently collect for the hygiene packs? In travel sizes, they collect: tooth brushes, tooth paste, mouth wash, floss, shampoo, soap, razors, hand sanitizer, sunscreen, bottles of water, and snacks. Q-tips, toilet paper, nail clippers and disposable sanitary pads are also appreciated. They are also open to suggestions.

If you would like to learn more about Chris’ and William’s service project(s), or would like to donate toward their cause, please let us know. Contact Kristine at kolson@communitypath.org or (503) 935-5243 ext. 228.


DD Advocacy Days in Salem

Image description: A group of advocates sitting around a conference room listening to a presentation on legislative advocacy at the Oregon State Capitol in Salem in February 2019./Oregon DD Coaltion at https://www.facebook.com/ORDDCoalition/photos

Image description: A group of advocates sitting around a conference room listening to a presentation on legislative advocacy at the Oregon State Capitol in Salem in February 2019./Oregon DD Coaltion at https://www.facebook.com/ORDDCoalition/photos

 

Join us at the next DD Advocacy Day in Salem on Tuesday, March 5th (10am - 2pm). Community Pathways is joining the Oregon Developmental Disability Coalition's GO! Project Advocacy Team and self-advocates to help support DD rights and services during the 2019 Legislative Session. Come learn about legislative advocacy and how you can make your voice heard!

Sign up to get the GO! Project Bulletin (newsletter) for the latest advocacy updates. Visit https://orddcoalition.org/go-project/


Upcoming Event: Build A Movement Meeting

Image description: Build A Movement event flyer.

Image description: Build A Movement event flyer.

Community Pathways is proud to help sponsor and support the next Build A Movement (BAM) meeting of self-advocates on March 8th. BAM participants are self-advocates living in the Portland area who work together to address issues related to DD Services, Housing, and Healthcare. To learn more about BAM and how to get involved, contact Jennifer Knapp at knapp@cvision.org or (971) 347-7825.


Customer Survey on Gaming Events

Do you like playing board games, video games, Virtual reality, etc.? Let us know by taking a short survey on gaming events.

Community Pathways invites individuals-customers to take a short 5 question, confidential survey to let us know if you’re interested in joining a gaming event or group. Our team would love to host a game night or gaming event here at Community Pathways. But, first, we need your feedback!

The survey asks 5 questions and takes approximately 5 minutes to complete. You can take the survey online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/FPWPD9Z

Request a paper copy to be mailed to you, with a stamped return envelope, by emailing Kristine at kolson@communitypath.org or calling (503) 935-5243 ext. 228. You may also contact your PA who can request the survey be mailed to you.

Deadline: April 15, 2019

We look forward to hearing from you. Thank you!


Resources for Individuals and Providers

Please let us know if you have additional recommendations for resources Community Pathways can share with individuals-customers and providers online. Thank you! Call (503) 935-5243

Find a Provider (or individual to support)

OHCC Registry and Referral System: https://or-hcc.org/Welcome/Login?serviceGroupId=2

Food and Shelter

211 Info: http://211info.org/

Oregon Food Bank: https://www.oregonfoodbank.org/

Health and Safety

Additional Needs Registry: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/police/article/586275

Arts and Culture

The Gallery at Seven Corners Collaborative (2475 SE Ladd Ave, Portland, OR 97214)

Public Annex: http://www.publicannex.org/

PHAME Academy: https://www.phamepdx.org/

Activity Groups and Recreation

Off the Couch Activities: http://www.offthecouchevents.org/

Adventure Without Limits: https://www.awloutdoors.org/tripcalendar

Adaptive & Inclusive Recreation (City of Portland): https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/39830

Tech and Gaming

Guardian Games: http://www.ggportland.com/calendar/

Free Geek: https://www.freegeek.org/

Fidgetech: http://fidgetech.org/


Do you have more resource recommendations? Please help us share them with the community.
Contact Kristine at kolson@communitypath.org or (503) 935-5243 ext. 228. Thank you!

February 2019 Newsletter

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February 2019

With the rain pelting down in true Oregon fashion, we hope you're all staying dry and warm. A friendly reminder that our office will be closed this coming Monday, 2/18, in observance of Presidents' Day. We will reopen on Tuesday, 2/19, at 9 AM.

Continue reading for our latest news and updates. Have a wonderful weekend!

-The CPI Team

Questions or comments about the newsletter? Call Kristine at (503) 935-5243 ext. 228

Topics Inside

DD Advocacy

Art Around Town

Calling All Gamers - Take Our Survey

Food & Shelter Resources

NWDSA’s DS + Autism Workshop

Survey on Case Management


Group image of self-advocates, support providers, advocates, and legislators at a Build A Movement (BAM) event in Portland. Courtesy of Jennifer Knapp.

Group image of self-advocates, support providers, advocates, and legislators at a Build A Movement (BAM) event in Portland. Courtesy of Jennifer Knapp.

DD Advocacy

DD Advocacy Days in Salem: This past week, members of our team joined the Oregon Developmental Disability Coalition's GO! Project Advocacy Team at the State Capitol in Salem to participate in the DD Advocacy Day on 2/12 and show support to people testifying on behalf of DD services at the Ways and Means public hearing on 2/13. We invite you to join in advocacy during the 2019 Legislative Session to share your story and help support funding for DD services in Oregon. Your voice and story matter to legislators!


Save the Date! Build A Movement (BAM), an advocacy initiative organized by Self-Advocates Taking Action, will be holding an event and training on March 8th. Self-advocates, support providers, and advocates are all welcome to join. Please stay tuned for full event details. We'll post them on our website and Facebook page soon. Questions? Contact Jennifer Knapp at jknapp@cvision.org. C

Acrylic painting on canvas hanging in the reception area of Community Pathways’ office. Courtesy of CPI.

Acrylic painting on canvas hanging in the reception area of Community Pathways’ office. Courtesy of CPI.

Art Around Town

See the Field of View 2018 Residency Exhibit at Wollf Gallery before it closes on February 24th. The exhibit is a collaboration between Wollf Gallery and Public Annex. It features works by Alma Bate, Job Erickson, John Griffiths, and Michael Sherman. Free and open to the public. All are welcome! 

You're invited to Multnomah County I/DD's Art Show and Reception on February 26th from 1to 4 PM. It will be held in the Pine Room of the 5 Oak Building at 209 SW 4th Avenue in Portland. Free and open to the public, the art show and reception will feature works and performances by developmentally diverse artists and musicians.

White Sony Ps4 dualshock on wood table. Stock image from Pexels.

White Sony Ps4 dualshock on wood table. Stock image from Pexels.

Gaming Opportunities in Portland Metro area

Calling all gamers! At Community Pathways, we know many people who share a passion for games, whether they play board games, video games, or virtual reality games.

We’re curious to know if the individuals we serve and their support networks would be interested in attending game events at Community Pathways. Let us know by taking this online survey.

If you would like the survey emailed to you, or a printed copy mailed to you, please call Kristine at (503) 935-5243 ext. 228. Thank you!

We recommend checking out Guardian Games’ Calendar for upcoming gaming events in Portland.

Food & Shelter Resources

A reminder that February SNAP benefits were allocated in January and participants, including customers of Community Pathways, are being advised to carefully budget their benefits for the rest of this month. We recommend visiting www.211info.org or calling 2-1-1 and using the Oregon Food Bank's Food Finder to locate food pantries and shelters during these cold winter months. Check out our Facebook page for regular resource updates.

Volunteers preparing to deliver food boxes to individuals in need of assistance. Courtesy of CPI.

Volunteers preparing to deliver food boxes to individuals in need of assistance. Courtesy of CPI.

NWDSA’s “We All Belong: Dual Diagnosis Down Syndrome/Autism” workshop on February 21st

The Northwest Down Syndrome Association (NWDSA) is holding a We All Belong: Dual Diagnosis Down Syndrome/Autism workshop on Thursday, February 21st from 6 to 8:30 PM. The workshop will be held in the Multnomah Education Service District’s Auditorium at 11611 Northeast Ainsworth Circle in Portland. This event is aimed at individuals and families experiencing Down syndrome and Autism, as well as professionals who support individuals with a dual diagnosis. The workshop provides, “community, research, tools and tips to support families and help build life-long learners.”

Registration is required. Families, please register using this link. Professionals, please register using this webpage. Both links provide access to registration information in English and Español.

Oregon Survey on I/DD Case Management - Your Feedback Matters!

Individuals and their families are encouraged to take the Oregon Survey on I/DD Case Management Roles and Responsibilities.The survey is confidential and takes approximately 15-20 minutes to complete. Take the survey online at https://healthmanagement.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_cNhb2rfSnFNeJwh

See the original message from Lilia Teninty, Director, Office of Developmental Disabilities Services on  Oregon DHS' website. The DHS Office of Developmental Disabilities Services is, "seeking participants in a voluntary, confidential survey about the functions of I/DD case management--what is working well, and what could be better."

December 2018 Newsletter - Happy Holidays!

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As December comes quickly to an end, we are reminded to take a moment to reflect on the past year as we think ahead to the new year to come. 2018 was a special year for Community Pathways, highlighted by several milestones and important changes:

  • We moved to the Seven Corners Collaborative in June.

  • We launched a new website.

  • We celebrated CPI’s 10th anniversary as a support services brokerage in July.

  • The Grand Opening of The Seven Corners Collaborative in September was a hit.

  • Info fairs and self-advocacy events helped us to connect with more people and resources in the community and share what Community Pathways does as a support services brokerage.

  • Several new staff members were added to our growing team.

  • The introduction of the Oregon Needs Assessment (ONA) led to the creation of three new ONA Assessor positions on our team. We are grateful that two of these positions were able to be filled by existing staff members.

  • Over the course of the past year, we’ve gained over 60 new followers on Facebook, helping us to connect with more people and to make more resources accessible online.

  • Our capacity has grown from serving 450 to 475 individuals.

Thank you to everyone who has helped make 2018 an extra special year for Community Pathways. We are grateful for the individuals and community we serve and look forward to connecting with more of you in 2019.

Happy Holidays!

-The CPI Team


2018 News Recap

website launch & online resources

Earlier this year, Community Pathways redesigned and launched a new website to help us make the information and resources we connect people with more accessible online. We are also excited to be connecting with more individuals, families and providers through our website and Facebook page. The update was guided by feedback from individuals, providers, and members of our staff and board. This feedback also informs our use of Facebook, which has helped us gain over 60 new followers this year!  Please, leave a comment or review to share your experience of us and help more people get to know us better. Thank you!

We Moved!

Visit us at the Seven Corners Collaborative

 
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Come visit us at our new location in the Seven Corners Collaborative in southeast Portland. We moved to this new building in June. It is designed to be universally accessible. We are grateful to be sharing this building with our partners Community Vision, FACT Oregon, and the Oregon Council on Developmental Disabilities. Visitors are welcome to tour the Assistive Technology Lab and test out the accessible kitchen. Just ask!

Our new location and address:

2475 SE Ladd Avenue, Suite 220, Portland, OR 97214

10th anniversary celebration

 
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Community Pathways' celebrated its 10th anniversary as a support services brokerage in July. We hosted a party and invited the individuals we serve, their families and providers, our staff members, board members, and partner organizations to celebrate with us. It was a fun and meaningful opportunity for the community to gather and create fun memories together. We are grateful for the individuals and community we serve. Thank you to New Seasons-Seven Corners for donating food toward the event. We are glad to have neighbors that want to partner with us and support our mission of assisting people with disabilities to live empowered, self-determined lives through community connections. Thank you to everyone who joined us for this celebration!

Grand Opening of Seven Corners Collaborative

 
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The Grand Opening of the Seven Corners Collaborative building in September was a success. Over 200 people attended the opening, including some of the individuals we serve, their families and providers. We’re grateful to Teote for generously donating delicious food toward the event. The Grand Opening was a wonderful opportunity to get to know our neighbors, community partners, and the individuals and families we all serve. Thank you to everyone who joined us!

Changes to our staff - New Hires & New Roles

 
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Admin Staff:

This fall, Olivia joined our team as the full-time Administrative Assistant. She is the first person many people connect with when they contact and visit our office. Kaaren, who was recently named Self Advocate of the Year by OSAC, just started her position as Front Desk Support and helps greet people and answer calls when Olivia is away from the front desk. Tracy has returned to our team after living abroad for a year. She provides much appreciated help with filing. Meet our team.

ONA Assessors:

The introduction of the Oregon Needs Assessment (ONA) this year led to the creation of three ONA Assessor positions on our team. We are glad to have filled two of the three roles with existing staff members. All three ONA Assessors bring diverse experience and compassion to their positions. More information about the ONA will be provided in 2019. Meet our ONA Assessors. If you have questions, ask a PA or contact us.

Info Fairs & Outreach

 
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Community Pathways attended several info fairs and advocacy events this year and looks forward to connecting with more individuals and community partners this coming year. Our goal is to educate more people about support services brokerages, the process of entering into brokerage services, person-centered approaches to support services, the principles of self-determination, and self-advocacy.

The info fairs and events we attended in 2018 include:

Multnomah County Information Fair for I/DD on May 1, 2018 was well attended by families and individuals experiencing I/DD who live in Multnomah County. Learn more about Multnomah County DD services.

Clackamas County Support Services Info Nights provide an opportunity for ‘transition age’ individuals to learn about adult support services that will become available to them when they turn 18. We also welcome individuals who are 18 years of age and older who want to learn more about brokerage support services. Info nights are held at Clackamas Education Service District.
 
OHSU’s 5th Annual DD Transition Fair: A Passport to a Healthy Future.  The event was organized by The Institute on Developmental Disability (IDD) at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) and held at Mount Hood Community College. The event, “emphasized a holistic approach to adolescent transition for young people (ages 12-26) who experience disability.”
 
2018 Division/Clinton Street Fair and Parade. Community Pathways helped sponsor this event and partnered with the Oregon Council on Developmental Disability to staff a booth. We enjoyed connecting with our new neighborhood in southeast Portland, sharing about available support services and self-advocacy opportunities. 8,000 visitors attended this event. Join the fun next summer at the 2019 Division/Clinton Street Fair and Parade!

We look forward to participating in these events and more in 2019. Questions? Call Kristine at (503) 935-5243 ext. 228 or email us.

Advocacy & volunteer service

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Throughout the year, members of our team volunteer with different organizations that advocate for and assist individuals with a developmental disability to live full lives in the community. Among the organizations and events that our staff members volunteer for are:

Build A Movement is an initiative led by Self-Advocates Taking Action and supported by Community Vision and support services brokerage staff. BAM helps self-advocates organize, focus on key topics, and prepare to speak with legislators about issues addressed in their planning meetings. To get involved, please email Jennifer Knapp at jknapp@cvision.org

2018 All Ability Tri4Youth organized by FACT Oregon was a major success. Two members of our staff volunteered and had a great time cheering on kids of all abilities in their events. Save the date for the event on August 10, 2019 at the Tualatin Hills Athletic Center in Beaverton. SAVE THE DATE for the 2019 All Ability Tri4Youth will be held on August 10, 2019.

2018 TASH Conference. Community Pathways, FACT Oregon, Community Vision, and OCDD helped serve on the Local Host Committee for the 2018 TASH Conference held in Portland in November. Community Pathways sponsored two advocates (one self-advocate and one parent of an individual with a developmental disability) to attend the three-day conference.

DDAC Holiday Food and Toy Box Delivery. For the past four years, staff members have volunteered to help IDDAC (Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Advisory Committee), Sunshine Division (Portland Police Bureau) and Toy and Joy Makers (Portland Fire and Rescue) deliver food and toy boxes to individuals we serve.

Want to get involved? Call Kristine at (503) 935-5243 ext 228 or email us.



2019

Upcoming Advocacy Events

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Build A Movement

Join self-advocates in building a movement to address issues faced by adults with developmental disabilities living in the Portland Metro area, including housing, health care, and DD services. Questions? Email Jennifer Knapp at jknapp@cvision.org

DD Advocacy Days

Join the Oregon Developmental Disability Coalition's GO! Project Advocacy Team and join in advocacy during the 2019 Legislative Session, starting January 22nd. 2019 GO! Project Schedule


We want to hear from you - share your story

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We want to hear from you. Please consider sharing your story to help others live a more empowered, self-determined life in the community.

Please take a few minutes to leave a comment or review about Community Pathways on our Facebook page. Your reviews and comments help people visiting our page learn about who we are and what we do as a support services brokerage to assist individuals with disabilities to live empowered, self-determined lives through community connections.

Please remember: Community Pathways is a case management entity (CME) and support services brokerage. We are neither a provider agency nor the employer of direct support providers, such as personal support workers. We do assist individuals to enroll the direct support providers they choose to help them meet their needs and goals.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your PA or call our executive director Jennifer Santiago at (503) 935-5243 ext. 244. We appreciate your feedback!     


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Happy Holidays!

-The CPI Team