The Oklahoma Person-Centered Thinking Project is a collaborative effort to increase knowledge and skills in person-centered practices throughout Oklahoma.
The project has a long-term goal of improving the lives of people with intellectual and other disabilities by changing the thinking and practices of the people who support them.
The person-centered approach means that the people who know the person best come together to identify what is important to the person as well as what is important for the person.
Training in person-centered planning is training in a way of thinking in as much as it is in developing a plan. Too often plans are written but not used because the people responsible for implementing the plan were not part of writing it. Therefore the plan has no meaning for them. The person-centered thinking approach ensures that the plan includes not only considerations of health and safety, but also personal preferences, communication, rituals and daily routines. Working together with the person and his/her supporters, the plan becomes more than a paper requirement. It is a document about the best ways to support and respect the person to have the best life possible.
We believe this approach is critically important for a person who is not able to communicate with words. The tools help us listen differently and hear how the person communicates with his or her behavior.
The project partners are the Center for Learning and Leadership, the Oklahoma Developmental Disabilities Council, the Oklahoma Disability Law Center and Bios, A Better Life Homecare, Inc.