Marshaun solo

In July, Marshaun moved from a group home to his own apartment.  This was a major step towards his goal of becoming more independent.  Empower staff, family and friends held a house warming party for Marshaun on moving day!  During the party, when asked how he felt, he replied “proud of myself!”  What a beautiful moment for Marshaun and for the Community Housing staff, including Deanna King and Robin Stevens, who helped Marshaun achieve this goal.

Another person present at the party who helped ready Marshaun for this step is Jill Patterson.  Jill was Marshaun’s work site manager at the redemption center for the past eighteen months.  In the beginning, he was shy with customers and reluctant to smile or make eye contact.  Jill knew from observing him in other settings that Marshaun was actually outgoing and friendly with those he knew.  He needed to develop confidence in himself to bring out those innate tendencies, which are so critical to customer service, at work.

Just prior to completing his job training, Marshaun was the first person to greet customers when they came in to drop off their bottles and cans!  Now Marshaun is working with a counselor in the job placement division to get a job in the community.

Jill says Marshaun contributed to the redemption center’s success in two ways: his friendliness built up a strong customer base and he inspired his housemates and others with intellectual or developmental disabilities to try working at the redemption center.  Now, there are more than a dozen workers at the redemption center each day, which is good as there are lots more bottles and cans to be sorted than ever before.

Marshaun is an excellent example that anything is possible with hard work and determination.  He also shows that individual success has a ripple effect, leading others to aspire to similar results.


In July, Mapleton House staff and residents created a memorial garden to remember loved ones who have passed away. A combination of annuals and perennials were planted around the house’s exterior and a small plaque was placed in the garden which marks the garden’s purpose.  Residents now have a beautiful and peaceful place to visit when they go outside and want to remember loved ones.


wildwood dining set

Wildwood’s new dining set, refinished by Deanna King, to make meals even cozier for residents