Courage the theme for Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

On March 2, the Madison County commissioners signed a proclamation designating March as Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. They were joined by several individual served by Madison County Board of DD. Those on hand were: (front row, from left) Laura Cotton, Debbie Morris, CRSI Direct Service Provider Judy Coy; (back row) MCBDD Family Support Services Director Carol Ansel, Commissioner Mark Forrest, Commissioner Chris Wallace, MCBDD Superintendent Susan Thompson, Commissioner Dr. Tony Xenikis and County Administrator Rob Slane.

(Posted March 8, 2021)

The Cowardly Lion had it right.

The lovable, yet nervous, feline from “The Wizard of Oz” famously dreamed for bravery.

With a swipe of a pen in signing a proclamation at their March 2 meeting, the Madison County commissioners endorsed March as Developmental Disabilities (DD) Awareness Month. This year’s theme is to take time to know someone with a disability and recognize that they “Have Courage.”

Annually, the commissioners endorse DD Awareness Month. They support the Madison County Board of Developmental Disabilities (MCBDD) and the people the board serves throughout the year.

“The fact that ‘Have Courage’ is the theme this year is very appropriate,” said MCBDD Superintendent Susan Thompson. “So many of the individuals we serve have shown courage this past year as we all know the difficult challenges that the pandemic has presented.”

On hand for the proclamation signing were MCBDD consumers Laura Cotton and Debbie Morris, as well as their direct service provider, CRSI’s Judy Coy.

“These ladies represent the many people we serve who have had several aspects of their lives uprooted due to the pandemic,” Thompson said. “But they, like countless others, have been fortunate to have helpful direct care staff like Judy who have helped guide them through these unprecedented times.”

MCBDD Family Support Services Director Carol Ansel shared with the commissioners the process through which individuals with disabilities have received the COVID-19 vaccine. This included a registration process facilitated by Ansel and her staff, as well vaccines administered by MCBDD’s Health Services Coordinator Denise Zerkle, a registered nurse. Ansel and Thompson acknowledged the assistance offered by Madison County Public Health.

“The organization of the vaccine schedule by Carol and her staff have allowed us to be more efficient with the distribution at the Madison County Board of DD Office,” Thompson said. “Also, we are fortunate to have Denise to administer the vaccine as she was a familiar face who helped calm a potentially-stressful situation.”

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