The Power Up! InterHab Annual Conference not only empowers human services professionals from across the Midwest, it provides them with the tools they need to empower persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
In addition to powerful keynote speakers and informative learning labs, Power Up! also features an Art & Awards Ceremony, which recognizes the personal and professional achievements of Kansans with disabilities. The Art & Awards Ceremony also celebrates exceptional professionals from across the region that are committed to providing the best possible outcomes for the persons they serve.
Each award winner receives a piece of artwork handmade by a Kansas artist with an intellectual or developmental disability. The Art & Awards Ceremony is a truly inspiring and empowering event.
This year’s Art & Awards Ceremony was held on October 14 at Wichita’s Hyatt Regency. Lorie Angelo, Rainbows’ Case Management and CDDO Liaison, and youth Blake Unrein and Rebecca Oare, who receive Rainbows’ services, were each honored.
Lorie Angelo received The President’s Award. Lorie is well known throughout the state of Kansas in the area of individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. Her many years of experience have helped shape services and advocate for improvements throughout the years.
When you need to know something about funding, a service provider, a DD system’s issue or process, it is Lorie to whom you turn. Throughout the years, hundreds of children, families, and staff have benefited from her knowledge and savvy ability of approaching problems. Lorie Angelo is well deserving of The President’s Award.
Blake Unrein received the Outstanding Youth Award. An energetic, 15 year old boy, Blake is the life of the party and a joy to those who know him. He rarely has a bad day and can often be the catalyst for bringing joy to others. A lifelong Rainbows’ boy, Blake received Infant/Toddler Services when he was born with Down Syndrome. He attended Rainbows’ child care beginning at 3 months. Today he receives Targeted Case Management Services and after-school Latchkey through Family Support Services. Both help his family know he is safe and getting the care he needs to be successful.
Blake will be a sophomore this year at Northwest High School. He participates in Special Olympics, and excels at basketball and soccer. He enjoys the opportunities to perform community service like visiting people at nursing homes and cleaning up parks. These activities help him as he continues to work on life skills doing chores like making his bed, taking responsibility for keeping track of his electronics and other daily tasks.
Rebecca Oare was also recognized as an Outstanding Youth Award winner. While Rebecca was nominated by the Arc of Sedgwick County, Rebecca receives Targeted Case Management through Rainbows.
Congratulations to these three amazing individuals! Rainbows is so proud.
Watch the Awards Ceremony videos here: