Success Stories

We measure the success of our organization by the successes of our consumers and employees, whether those success seem big or small, whether they are life changing or simply make for a good day or a good story. Please share them!

Letters from Family Members and Guardians

posted Feb 17, 2017, 7:00 AM by Jeremy Mosher

From a Mother:

To Whom it May Concern,

We are very pleased with this program and feel Rusty's needs are met. I feel perfectly at ease when he is with your staff and also have used respite when my husband and I travel. We are really happy about our worker and the whole team. We really recommend Skills to anyone who needs this service.

--Joan Garner Almquist

From a Mother:

My son has been under the care of Skills Unlimited for over 10 years. In that time I have had a great relationship with those care givers. I call them any time I sense a need my son has or have information about him that I think would help them with his care. They call me when problems arise for my input as his parent.

Skills' owners care very much, personally, about their clients and that carries through with the employees.

I would highly recommend Skills Unlimited to any family.

--Joann Francis  

From a Guardian:

I really enjoy using Skills Unlimited for my wards. A warm environment and staff that are like family. The agency is always coming up with fun things for their clients to do. I really appreciate them!

--Angie Casavecchia, Public Administrator

From Parents:

As the parents of a client using Skills Unlimited services, my husband and I appreciate the services they provide to our son. We especially appreciate the respect that is shown to Chuck by the staff members.

His behavior isn't always the best, but the staff realizes this is indicative of a person with special needs. Through his difficult times, the Skills staff has been willing to work with us and they have patiently helped us work through whatever problems might have incurred. Together we have managed to deal with the difficulties and we've seen some tremendous changes. So much of these changes have been due to the staff's patience and willingness to work with him at his own pace.

Chuck thinks the staff members working with him are his best friends and that's how they treat him. He is invited to their homes and has gone with them on family outings. The staff's families are special to Chuck. He calls their children his nieces and nephews and the children treat him with respect.

My husband and I travel a lot and our lives are made so much simpler by knowing the staff of Skills is taking care of Chuck. We know his needs will be attended to even when we aren't around. We feel free to call the staff when there is a need that they aren't aware of and we are comfortable knowing it will be dealt with. They are watchful that others do not take advantage of Chuck, but they still understand his need for independence. They have been willing to discuss with us any questions we have and deal with whatever problems we've had.

We have had to deal with state agencies for Chuck's care and there are time we don't agree with the agency's recommendations. The Skills staff has helped them make his plan more suited to his individual needs.

Chuck is 46-years-old, but the only way he can have any independence is by having trained staff to assist him. We appreciate the friendly, respectful manner that the Skills Unlimited staff uses when working with him.

--Lynda & Bill Bishop

Rob M.

posted Feb 17, 2017, 6:58 AM by Jeremy Mosher   [ updated May 19, 2017, 9:14 AM ]

Rob is a 32  year old man who lives in his own home with one roommate.  His success story involves once living in the state hospital, advancing to various group home environments and now in an individualized supported living environment in his own home.  When Rob first came to Skills Unlimited, Inc., he weighed 358 pounds.  With the instructions of his physician and the assistance of the staff at Skills, as of April 2013, Rob has lost 157 pounds and now weighs 201 pounds.  He belongs to the local YMCA.  The Director of Services at Skills Unlimited, Inc., has promised to take Rob to lunch once he gets to the 200 pound mark and Rob is really looking forward to that date.

In addition to Rob’s accomplishments with his diet and exercise improving the quality of his life, he has successfully quit smoking!  This is truly a success story of working together to achieve a healthier lifestyle.

Rob before .........               Rob today ........   

Meet Cassie

posted Feb 4, 2016, 11:15 AM by Jeremy Mosher   [ updated Apr 11, 2017, 12:58 PM ]

Cassie has lived most of her life in rural southwest Missouri.  Her mother abandoned Cassie to her great aunt and uncle when she was just a child. Cassie has cerebral palsy and her mother struggled with the responsibility of caring for a child with so many special needs.  Fortunately for Cassie, her adoptive parents raised her as their own and provided her the medical attention that she needed.

A few years ago, Cassie's family went through some very difficult days.  Both of her adoptive parents were aging and illnesses were taking a toll on the family.  Her mother lost a leg thru amputation leaving the physical responsibility of Cassie's care to her aging father.  Their small trailer home was not equipped to adequately accommodate 2 large wheelchairs nor were there private restroom accommodations.  It became increasingly difficult for Cassie to be able to leave the house - it was extremely hard on her father to lift Cassie by himself into the truck and to load her wheelchair.  Doctor's appointments seem to be the only time Cassie was able to get out the house.  

As a result of all of these changes and with the advanced age of her parents, Cassie and her family began to think about the options available to Cassie for her future care.  That is where Skills Unlimited, Inc. entered the picture.  They were first provided Personal Care Attendant (PCA) services by Skills in their home and even though it helped, their home was just not properly set up to meet Cassie's needs.  So the next step in Cassie's journey found her qualified for group home living.  Once an opening at Skills became available, Cassie left her childhood home and moved into the Skills Unlimited Joplin group home.  Several years later, Cassie was approved to move into an Individualized Supported Living (ISL) environment of her own.  Finding a compatible roommate took a while, but finally Cassie was able to find a roommate that clicked.  They have moved into a brand new house built specifically for Cassie with wider doors and a private handicap accessible bathroom.  Cassie gets along so well with her new roommate and her family; they have taken her in as part of their family.  She is able to go places for enjoyment and is making new friends in the community.  She is beginning to not only experience life but also enjoy it.

Cassie's future goal is to write her story.  She wants to share her trials so that others with cerebral palsy will know that there is hope despite their disabilities.  She wants to share her story of the love that her adoptive parents gave to her and teach others how her faith in God sustained her through the rejection of her birth mother and the death of her adoptive parents. 

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