Our philosophy is simple: Provide the assistance needed to ensure that every person leads the life they want to live, while treating them with the respect and dignity they deserve.
Our administrator, Cathy Brooks, has been working in the field of developmental disabilities since 1991, and began specializing with individuals with a dual diagnosis in 1998. People with developmental disabilities combined with mental illness often face living in an institution, yet in many cases these individuals can live and thrive in the community if encouraged with the needed supports. Cathy Brooks’ track record of success with these very difficult individuals gives her the experience and ability to assist people in turning their lives around and allowing them to live rich, full lives of independence in the community.
Direct service professionals are the backbone in creating happy, consistent, and secure lives for the people we serve. Ohio state rule requires 40 hours of initial training and 8 hours of additional training each year. At Clear Skies Ahead our goal is not to meet the standards but to exceed them in order to give our employees the knowledge and confidence they need. Every employee starts at Clear Skies Ahead LLC with a minimum of 48 hours of extensive initial employment training.
Every new employee receives training in:
- Our Mission and Vision
- History of developmental disabilities
- Intellectual disability
- Disability etiquette
- Rights of a person with a developmental disability
- Contact information
- HCBS Waivers
- Person Centered Planning
- Individual Service Plans
- Documentation guidelines
- Service delivery documentation
- Choice and skill development
- Daily notes
- Daily Living Skills
- Communicating with people who are non-verbal
- Safe food handling and enhancing mealtime
- Personal appearance
- Human Rights
- Abuse and Neglect
- Incident Reporting
- Fire Safety
- Safe Driving
- Universal Precautions
- Review of DODD Health and Safety Alerts
- Handling of funds
- Clear Skies Ahead Policies
- CPR/First Aid
- Medication Administration
- Behavior Support
- Behavior Support Plans
Staff do not come into contact with our individuals until all classroom training steps are complete. They will then receive an additional minimum of 10 hours of shadowing where they will follow another employee. That new employee and their supervisor will decide if additional shadowing is needed or wanted. Under no circumstance is a new employee left alone to work until they are comfortable in their new position. We strongly believe in continued employee training and development. Staff meetings are held at a minimum of once a month so that we are able to give specific guidance. Continued training is provided as needed to maintain certification in CPR/FA, medication administration and behavior support. Many of the initial training steps are repeated annually to ensure staff are up to date with the newest information. It is important to Clear Skies Ahead to give our employees every tool possible to provide the best environment possible. Furthermore, we have developed systems and procedures within the company that insure our employees utilize the methods and procedures that Clear Skies Ahead has developed from years of successful supports.
Direct support professionals as well as management employees receive training from many outside entities including PAR, NADD, OPRA, Bethesda Institute, OACBDD, OSDA, and the Cuyahoga Board of Developmental Disabilities, as well as other opportunities as they become available.