The founding of One Step Beyond, Inc in 2002 was inspired by one family’s need to provide a program for their daughter, Dylan, and many of her peers, who were searching for a post-High School program. They envisioned a program that would allow their sons and daughters who had intellectual disabilities the opportunities required and desired to grow in skills, personal relationships, and inclusion in their community. One Step Beyond launched in 2003 with 16 participants in a small neighborhood location and has now grown to answer the needs of more than 700 individuals and their families who have intellectual disabilities in four locations.
Our focus has been to open our arms to individuals and their families who seek our programs and continue to live up to our name by going One Step Beyond the status quo for programs that serve individuals who have intellectual disability.
Our Core Values:
- RESPECT AND DIGNITY: People who have Intellectual Disabilities are fully included citizens of our community and deserve to be treated as such.
- PERSONAL CHOICE: Personal choice is a human right, and people who have Intellectual Disability must have a controlling voice in defining their current and future goals for achieving an enriching and meaningful life.
- INDEPENDENCE: People who have Intellectual Disabilities must have access to opportunities for continuous personal development to attain skills, to achieve the ability to support themselves through meaningful employment, to access community resources, and to live in a residence of their choice that is affordable and meets their needs for support.
- INCLUSION AND ACCESS TO COMMUNITY RESOURCES: People who have Intellectual Disabilities are citizens of our community and deserve access to all the resources that any member of the community has – employment training and placement, fair wages for work performance, public transportation, fitness and arts opportunities, health and mental health care services, and financial aid when needed.
- PERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS AND SOCIAL NETWORKS: “No man [or woman] is an island.” People who have Intellectual Disabilities cannot be relegated to isolation in a family home or public housing without access to opportunities to be with peers, form friendships, and enjoy the fulfillment that comes with enriching relationships.
- PARTNERSHIP: It takes a “Village” to address the needs of vulnerable populations in our community. We recognize that we cannot achieve our Mission alone. We must work with partners in local businesses, governmental bodies, community service organizations, agencies with aligned missions, and other civic entities to open doors of opportunity to people who have Intellectual Disability.
- COMMUNITY AWARENESS: People who have Intellectual Disabilities have for too long been seen as a subculture of our community, sequestered in protective but isolating programs. They are no longer to be seen as the recipients of charity, but as fully participating contributors to our community. Their abilities rather than their disabilities must be showcased and acknowledged.