Promoting Inclusion, Diversity and Equity for all Venture employees.
As part of our continuing commitment to ensure all Venture employees feel included and supported, our TogetherVenture program will consist of the following:
Various days throughout the year will be highlighted to promote education and awareness of differing groups of people.
FORUMS AND TRAINING PROGRAMS
We commit to providing education to all our staff
Venture has partnered with the African Bridge Network and Simmons University for a comprehensive study: Pathways to Leadership Among Foreign-Born and Native-Born Human Services Workers: Equity and Inclusion
Employees are encouraged to participate in our Bias Training
Virtual and in person forums and employee discussion groups will be held as a resource to address concerns with diversity and inclusion that may be effecting them.
Our mentorship program will ensure all employees have the tools and knowledge to advance their careers.
We want to hear from you.
Do you have suggestions on improving or enhancing your work environment in regards to inclusion, diversity and equity? Please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Message From Our CEO
Venture is, has always been, and will always be a safe place for all our employees. Everyone is important; every idea is an opportunity to make us better, and everyone’s experiences matter. We celebrate our diversity and are grateful that we employ people from over 30 countries, each one of those professionals working to make a difference in someone’s life. Our strength as an agency comes from people who are all different from each other working together to do the same thing; help those who need it. I have watched in amazement as our nurses have worked tirelessly and seamlessly to keep people safe from the pandemic. One department of people of different ages, different experiences, different beliefs and from different countries all doing the same work in order to help others. This is one example but it highlights what happens here every day and that is what defines us. Not our differences but the way we benefit from them in service to others.
The agency will continue to be a safe and welcoming place for everyone we employ and support. We all come from different places but we ultimately end up being the same. It is what makes us successful and it is what we can all depend on when things around us get far too complicated.
This week has been designated as National Direct Support Professional Recognition Week, and we would like to take a moment to recognize the dedication of our agency’s Direct Support Professionals. DSPs are highly-trained, compassionate professionals who provide a vital contribution to their communities – supporting those who need assistance with essential daily needs. The work they do allows our society’s most vulnerable members to live safe, fulfilling lives while being part of a community of their choice.
Direct Service Professionals support individuals with some of their most basic daily needs, such as preparation of meals, helping with medications, bathing, dressing, and transportation. DSPs encourage meaningful community integration, help individuals maintain relationships with family and friends, and help identify recreational interests. These staff members are not only daily caregivers – they assist with communication, medical care, and more. At Venture, Direct Support Professionals are the lifeline of our agency, and we honor the work they do every day.
The following article was written by Andrew with help from the manager of his program. Andrew lives in a Venture residence in Worcester County and wanted to share his experience with using assistive technology.
Every day, I rely on assistive technology. I use an overhead barrier-free lift system to get out of bed in the morning. I then use my customized wheelchair to successfully complete my morning routines before leaving for work. To get to work, I ride in a customized van. The van lifts me off the ground and into the van with staff assistance. When I was younger, all of these things – getting out of bed, getting into my wheelchair, and getting into any mode of transportation – were done by people lifting me. When people lift you, it can be really scary and sometimes I was injured. I have not gotten injured since I started using mechanical lifts and I feel much more comfortable.
In April 2017, I wanted to begin doing some races, but wasn’t sure I would be able to. However, I did not realize that specialized running wheelchairs are available. The first time I saw the running chair, I was a bit nervous. I thought, “It doesn’t look like any other chair I have ever used.” It only has three wheels – two in the back and one in the front.
I was very lucky to meet the team of individuals who designed and built these running chairs, and they explained aerodynamics to me. Until that moment, I had never realized the importance of science in assistive technology.
When I participate in races with the assistance of Team Hoyt New England runners, I am sitting in an aerodynamically correct position for both my physical needs and for the person who is pushing me – amazing! Later this summer, I will be learning to sail on a sailboat that has been fitted with assistive lifts to get in and out of the boat, and a rudder that has been adapted for me to use. I can’t wait… And I am no longer scared of trying any new assistive technology!
Morgan’s Wonderland, the country’s most accessible theme park, has opened the world’s first inclusive water park. Morgan’s Inspiration Island offers the excitement and fun of a water park to children and adults of all abilities, and offers complimentary waterproof wheelchairs (including air-powered power wheelchairs), warm-water splash pad, beautiful interactive water playgrounds, cabanas for relaxing, and a river boat ride. Spacious accessible changing rooms, reasonable ticket prices, sensory-friendly environments, and handicapped-accessible everything make this water park an incredible experience for everyone – especially those who haven’t had the opportunity to enjoy an amusement park due to physical disabilities, developmental disabilities, ambulation difficulties, or medical conditions. Admission for those with disabilities is free of charge. This park has truly thought of everything!
The park’s creator, Gordon Hartman, is a philanthropist who created the amusement park and water park after being inspired by his daughter Morgan, who has developmental disabilities. In addition to funding the parks, the Gordon Hartman Family Foundation offers grants to organizations that help people with special needs. Let’s hope that others around the country take the lead of Morgan’s Wonderland and make recreational opportunities available for everyone!