In August of 2011, Dale Rogers Training Center (DRTC) was honored to be featured on the television show, “Found Causes”. This weekly television series highlights organizations serving individuals in need in the Oklahoma City area and surrounding community. Each episode gives an in-depth look at two charities and how the services they provide help other individuals. The show provides a unique look into the lives of the people and how they are touched by the organization.
Found Causes give viewers a great understanding of how DRTC provides vocational training and employment opportunities to individuals with disabilities. The moving interviews throughout the segment show the difference that Dale Rogers makes in the lives of its staff, clients, parents and the community as a whole. You can view this video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SCvHa3brhGk&feature=plcp
A special thank you to Dale Epperson and his new show Found Causes.
One of the best things that came from Dale’s filming was a story told by Jean Rucker, the mother of one of our individuals, Lisa. Jean and her late husband, Wesley, were always great supporters of Dale Rogers Training Center. I always assumed it was because Wesley served on our Board of Directors, but Jean tells another story: “After Lisa was diagnosed with Down Syndrome, I was lost. I was home alone with Lisa, the house was so quiet. I knew I needed help to be able to care for her. I looked in the phone book, and found Dale Rogers Training Center. I called and the former Director, Pat McFarland, invited me to a parent support group. I was so excited and made plans to go but when the time came, I found I just couldn’t.”
“Pat called every month for several months and each time I would promise to come. I would make plans to attend and then I wouldn’t go. Finally Ms. McFarland called and said, ‘Jean, if you won’t come to us, we’ll come to you’. She showed up at my house with two parents, Marlyn and Pat, and we talked non-stop about our children and ourselves. Eventually, Lisa started attending and is now in a special program for adults. What would my family ever have done without Dale Rogers Training Center?”
That was 1974. I’d like to think Dale Rogers Training Center still plays a pivotal role in the lives of the individuals we serve and their families.
Dale Rogers Folks Earned 5.4 Million in Wages:
Wow, we served 1,223 people with disabilities this past year alone. 1,031 folks were placed or supported in community jobs. People with disabilities in all our programs earned 5.4 million dollars in wages! Think about how much taxes that amounts to and how it helped the community; how many individuals and families were positively impacted? Interestingly, only 15% of our services are on campus, 85% are community based and Work Projects.
2012 brings: building a new building for the expansion of the On-Line Store and Prairie Spices, establishing a retail area for all our products, renovation of client rest rooms and the new Employment Services building, and Executive Director and Board of Directors participation in the Oklahoma Center for Non-Profit’s Standards for Excellence. We are also starting the plan for our 60th Anniversary in 2013.
We are so unique in our entrepreneurial business philosophy of earning our own way. Because we are so regulated and systems driven, the Board and staff work in an ongoing partnership including strategic planning.
I am especially proud of the way our departments interact and support each other. It amazes me every year that we are able to make close to perfect survey scores, have multiple successes and upgrades, as well as, add to the choices our individuals and their families have. All of this dovetails with the strategic planning goals and new opportunities for the people we serve.
Connie Thrash McGoodwin, M. Ed.