Darrell Watts and his sister Lisa Harrison both live in Audrain County. Darrell was born with cerebral palsy and is legally blind. Lisa is her brother’s guardian and also a Residential House Coordinator for Audrain Development Disability Services - where she works with other people with disabilities on a daily basis.
They spoke about how Darrell owning his own home has caused some healthcare struggles over the past few years.
Carolyn Lewis lives in Audrain County, Missouri. She has worked for a man in Audrain County for ten years through the Missouri Department of Mental Health’s Self-Directed Supports program.
She spoke with her cousin, Sheila Artis, about some of the struggles she has faced while working with this program – like lack of benefits and raises throughout the years.
The man she works for also received a letter in the mail earlier this month letting them know that, following state budget restrictions, the program’s individual budget allocations had been adjusted to reflect a 2.82 percent budget cut.
Carolyn also spoke about her fears going forward – for herself, her employer and this program - as future Missouri budget cuts loom.
Janelle Williams and JoAnne Marietta both work at Audrain County Crisis Intervention Service or ACCIS – a non-profit that provides resources to people in domestic and sexual violence situations.
Janelle is the executive director and JoAnne works as the equal access advocate. They spoke about the challenges their clients without legal immigration status have when pursuing legal action against abusive partners and when trying to obtain U visas, a nonimmigrant visa set aside for people who are victims of crimes and have suffered substantial abuse.
Tad Dobyns is a community organizer for Central Missouri Community Action in Audrain County. He recently sat down with his next-door neighbor of sorts: Phil Iman, the director of the Help Center next door.
They spoke about a new program at the Help Center – called the Senior Box program – that provides extra food resources to low-income elderly individuals and helps meet some of the need in their community.
Simon McKeown has been a physician in Mexico, Missouri, for many years. Now, he works as the medical director for the Audrain County Health Department and works at a local Urgent Care office.
He sat down with his oldest son, Jonah, to speak about some of the health issues in Audrain County – like high STD rates – and reflect on how their family has benefited from social programs in the past, like years ago, when Simon was in medical school.
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