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Developmental Supports

Mark D. Elmore Center

10501 Lackman Road, Lenexa, KS 66219

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Johnson County Developmental Supports (JCDS) is the agency of Johnson County government that facilitates career and personal development for Johnson County residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The agency regularly serves more than 500 people each day through a broad array of community-based programs and supports.

Designated as Johnson County's Community Developmental Disabilities Organization (CDDO), JCDS also offers a single point of entry for those seeking DD services, determines eligibility for services, and coordinates a network of more than 70 Johnson County providers.

Department News

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Direct Support Professional Jessa Molina Named Recipient of 2020 DSP of the Year Award
May 11, 2020

Jessa MolinaJohnson County Developmental Supports is excited to announce that Jessa Molina has been named a recipient of the 2020 Direct Support Professional of the Year award for Kansas from The American Network of Community Options and Resources. Molina joins 54 other recipients of ANCOR’s 2020 Direct Support Professional of the Year awards, chosen from a field of 300 outstanding nominees.

DSPs such as Molina play a crucial role in supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Molina works as the business account manager for JCDS. She also helps facilitate the End-Dependence Kansas Program for the agency. She offers career development support for individuals receiving services from JCDS and cultivates business partnerships throughout Johnson County.

“Jessa has been with our agency for three and a half years, and she is a fantastic champion for the people we support,” said JCDS Executive Director Chad VonAhnen. “She is a consummate professional who is compassionate, tenacious and devoted to our mission of providing choice-driven supports. We are incredibly proud to work with her, and this honor is well deserved.”

Since 2007, ANCOR’s annual DSP of the Year awards recognize outstanding professionals who deliver long-term supports and services to people with IDD. The awards celebrate the important role DSPs play in ensuring individuals with IDD are included and empowered in the community, and raise awareness about a direct support workforce in crisis.

DSPs perform this essential work in a field where a workforce crisis has led to turnover rates in excess of 50 percent and vacancy rates that average 18 to 20 percent nationally.

The 2020 DSP of the Year awards will be presented in a virtual ceremony on Wednesday, May 6.

Mark D. Elmore Center Closed
March 24, 2020

Until further notice, the Mark D. Elmore Center will be closed to visitors. Due to the COVID-19 public health crisis, all day services and supported worksites, including Project SEARCH, are suspended.

UPDATE: JCDS suspends supported worksites
March 18, 2020

Effective March 19, supported worksites, including Emerging Artists and Papercrete Works, are suspended until further notice. We are continuing to support integrated, competitive employment based on individual needs. This includes Project SEARCH.

Learn more about our response to COVID-19.

UPDATE: JCDS suspending day services at the Elmore Center
March 17, 2020

To lower the risk of exposure to COVID-19, we have made the decision to suspend day services at the Elmore Center and discourage all visitors effective March 18. This is in response to growing concern for the safety and wellbeing of staff and people served at JCDS and recommendations from public health officials and our medical staff. This action will remain in effect until further notice.

We are continuing operations for our employment programming outside the Elmore Center, including Papercrete Works and Emerging Artists.  JCDS staff are diligent in adhering to health and safety protocols as defined by these external business locations. 

Individuals and families are expected to follow public safety guidelines for social distancing and to limit interactions to meeting essential needs only. If this protocol is not followed, JCDS may not be able to continue provision of services. Visitors will not be allowed at JCDS service locations, including residential, except for special circumstances. However, families may take individuals to receive care at their home for an extended period if desired.

We believe these precautionary steps are in the best interest of our staff and the people we support, and we anticipate these will be temporary.

This information is subject to change ­and could change at any point due to the nature of the situation. Our JCDS Pandemic Response Team is meeting daily to address new developments in this rapidly changing event.

For more information, please visit https://jocogov.org/coronavirus. Johnson County Government has ­opened a hotline for the public to ask questions about COVID-19. The number is 913-715-2819. They will be taking calls from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For program specific questions, please contact Beth Johnson for information regarding Day Services and Sarah Schlitter for Residential Services.

You may also contact Deputy Director Shelly May with general questions about services.

JCDS response to COVID-19
April 27, 2020

At Johnson County Developmental Supports, we are working to ensure staff, residents and the people we serve continue to thrive as we navigate the changing nature of the current public health crisis. We are continuing to prioritize preventative measures such as social distancing, event rescheduling, and enhanced cleaning and sanitization processes at the Mark D. Elmore Center and in residential settings.

We are monitoring the news surrounding COVID-19 locally and nationwide, and remaining in consistent contact with county leadership, the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services, Johnson County Department of Health and Environment and other relevant agencies as we take the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of those we serve and our staff.

Until further notice, we will be making the following adjustments:

  • We are limiting visitors to the Elmore Center, and we’re asking anyone who may have been exposed to COVID-19, traveled to a level 3 location, or anyone who doesn’t feel well to please refrain from visiting our facility.
  • Persons served with a fever or persistent cough will be sent home. Any visitors exhibiting these symptoms will not be admitted.
  • Out of precaution, nursing staff will begin checking temperatures of people we support entering the Elmore Center on Monday, March 16.
  • We are limiting community outings for the people we serve in order to avoid large gatherings and promote social distancing.
  • We are encouraging telecommunications as appropriate.
  • The volunteer program has been suspended. We will not be accepting new volunteers, nor will we be utilizing volunteers at this time.
  • If individuals receive residential support from JCDS and normally receive day services in a larger setting, such as the Elmore Center, they will be temporarily supported in their homes during the day.

We believe these precautionary steps are in the best interest of our staff and the people we support, and we anticipate these will be temporary.

This information is subject to change and could change at any point due to the nature of the situation. Our JCDS Pandemic Response Team is meeting daily to address new developments in this rapidly changing event.

For more information, please visit jocogov.org/coronavirus. Don’t hesitate to ask questions as you have them. For program specific questions, please contact Beth Johnson for information regarding Day Services and Sarah Schlitter for Residential Services. You may also contact Deputy Director Shelly May with general questions about services..

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