Finding Independence

Paulding:  Emma Lucio of Paulding is the epitome of a self-advocate, conveying a strong voice when it comes to her likes and dislikes, according to Program Specialist Sharon Franklin. She is a decision-maker regarding her own needs and wishes and she knows how to stand-up fo13EmmaLucior herself.

Emma moved from a group home setting to her own three bedroom apartment a number of years ago. Emma likes nice things and is very conscious of how her home looks and she has worked hard to furnish it. Emma has a job at the PC Workshop in Paulding and has learned about the value of money and the hard work it takes to buy the things she needs and wants.

Emma receives only 18.75 hours of support from Brenda Ruder her support specialist (with CRSI since 2003) who offers advice from time to time and takes Emma to church, shopping, eating out, on appointments and other outings; but for the most part, Emma proudly lives independently.  She learns quickly and has grown tremendously over the past few years, according to Franklin who has been with CRSI since 2002.

Emma loves to be around her family. Recently she flew to Texas by herself to visit her sister. It was her first time flying and a great experience that she’ll never forget.

“Emma is a great inspiration to others with developmental disabilities and she is fun to be around”, says Franklin. “Just because you have a disability, doesn’t mean you can’t have a good, fulfilled life.”