The Center for Human Services (CHS) Community Skills Training, or better known as CST, is a service that has been offered by CHS for many years. This service assists individuals with needed support with activities that they need help completing. During the pandemic, this service has impacted individuals that CHS supports by helping them continue living a day to day life without limitations. CST provides supports including attending and understanding medical appointments and information, and follow-ups needed for healthy living. It also provides learning skills to help individuals remain living independently in their own homes. CHS provides this support to over 25 individuals in Pettis County and it helps them to be more integrated into the community. CST acts as a steppingstone for individuals, to meet their goal of building natural supports, and one day becoming completely independent in their interactions.
Debra Pearl, of Sedalia, utilizes her CST staff support through her Individual Skill Development Service. Debra works with her CST support on problem-solving, understanding independent living, and legal documents. Debra also works with CST to better budget her finances and learn to use tools like comparative shopping. Debra states, that both of these have been very beneficial to her independent living. Debra is employed by CJ’s Cleaning Service and works daily at Interstate Studio in Sedalia. Due to Debra’s hearing limitations, she honed her ability to read lips as a way to help with understanding others’ communication. Due to the pandemic and wearing a mask for protection, sounds became muffled, and lips were covered, making it harder for her to communicate. She spoke to her CST support regarding this and ways she could overcome it while keeping her employment successful. She was then provided clear masks to give to her coworkers to assist with her ability to continue to communicate with others!
Debra’s story goes to show how providing personalized supports can effectively change and enhance lives. The Center for Human Services looks forward to being a part of Debra’s continued growth, helping her to overcome barriers and live a meaningful and limitless life!