DSP's Making a Difference: Luisa Ozuna
As part of DSP Recognition Week, FADSP is pleased to recognize direct support professionals (DSPs) who are making a meaningful difference in the lives of the people they serve. Luisa Ozuna is one of those DSPs.
Luisa Ozuna has been in her current position as an Employment Coordinator with Brevard Achievement Center for five years. Luisa epitomizes the essence of an outstanding DSP because she makes a difference in the lives of all the people she helps. She is her clients’ strongest advocate not only for employment purposes, but also for their overall improvement. She consistently goes above and beyond her assigned duties to ensure that her clients receive exceptional services.
Luisa has made a huge impact on the day-to-day lives of the individuals being served through the Industry Readiness Training (IRT) program. Her responsibilities include assisting with preparing adults with disabilities and their support systems for work. In addition, because of her excellent relationships skills, Luisa was asked to chair the IRT’s Small Business Council (a group of local employers and BAC Board members that work together to find ways to educate the business community about hiring individuals with disabilities and overcoming barriers to employment).
One of the many examples of Luisa’s exceptional passion and job performance occurred about a year ago. Luisa was given an opportunity to help an individual who had been attending BAC’s Adult Day Training program for over ten years. This person (and his family) had no aspiration or intent to work in the community. Luisa conducted preference inventories and work skills assessments, provided education and support to his family, and ultimately located employment that was a perfect match to his skills, vocational training, and desires. She made arrangements for transportation to and from work, worked with his family and Waiver Support Coordinator to make sure the peripheral barriers were sufficiently addressed.
Luisa routinely goes above and beyond the job description or the funded mandates and is always willing to help with other programs when needed. Her respect for the individuals under her care is demonstrated by her ability to listen carefully to the clients to pick up clues about their needs and desires; she believes the consumer plays the largest role in their plans for growth and being successful. Luisa works with her clients to improve their self-awareness and self-advocacy. She then uses the information and knowledge she obtains to create self-determination activities and action plans needed to help the individual succeed.
Luisa creates and maintains relationships with individuals and stakeholders and to get them vested in the client’s well-being. She is a well-rounded professional with a strong character and work ethic, and the strength to affect change. Brevard Achievement Center is certainly grateful and fortunate to have Luisa Ozuna because she provides stellar services to all consumers and partner agencies.
Thank you, Luisa, for your continued service to the individuals served at Brevard Achievement Center!