Tyeshia Williams of RHD Mainstay Philadelphia honored as PAR Southeast Region Direct Support Professional of the Year

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Tyeshia Williams, Therapeutic Residential Specialist for RHD Mainstay Philadelphia, has been honored as the 2017 “We Are Worth It” Pennsylvania Advocacy and Resources for Autism and Intellectual Disability Southeast Region Direct Support Professional of the Year.

The “We Are Worth It” Direct Support Professional of the Year Award honors a Direct Support Professional from each region of Pennsylvania who is employed by a PAR Provider Member Organization and who has shown extraordinary determination and success in empowering people to lead fulfilling and enriching lives. Award winners have transformed lives by supporting people to achieve their personal outcomes while actively engaging in their communities.

See more photos of Tyeshia at the PAR conference and on the job at RHD Mainstay Philadelphia

Mainstay Philadelphia provides supervised community-based residential program designed to provide a range of established and innovative rehabilitation strategies for adults with developmental disabilities. The program focuses on community and personal safety, accountability, competence, least restrictive alternative, normalization, due process and control. The individuals Mainstay supports are often stigmatized and subsequently ostracized from the community. A critical component to the clients’ ability to lead safe, fulfilling lives is the dedicated direct-support staff working with these individuals on a daily basis.

“Although it is difficult to nominate only one of these professionals, Tyeshia Williams certainly stands out,” said Jeffrey Prince, Mainstay Philadelphia Director. “Tyeshia has been an incredible asset to Mainstay Philadelphia; her consistent nature and calm demeanor provides those she supports with an undeniable sense of safety, qualities that allow people to grow and learn. She expertly balances boundaries with caring, allowing those around her to gain trust in her. Tyeshia’s professional and stable demeanor has allowed the individual she supports to experience gains in problem-solving, coping strategies, self­ expression, and assertiveness. In addition to Tyeshia’s stellar interpersonal skills, her organizational sense and ability to plan are unparalleled, which has provided valuable stability to the home that she supports.

“These types of direct support professionals are the ones who truly make a difference in the lives of the people we support. The qualities and skills described above are essential in the creation of a trauma-informed environment. Tyeshia’s demeanor has been instrumental in the individual she supports making the tremendous gains that he has. In addition to her ability to build trusting relationships with the individuals she supports, Tyeshia has also been able to win the hearts of the families. Many of these family members have had negative experiences with the social service system, which is why Tyeshia’s ability to engage and connect with these supports is so impressive. They too can sense her devotion to this work, her trustworthiness, and her professionalism.

“Overall, Tyeshia is the quintessential social service professional. She is exactly the type of individual who allows programs like Mainstay Philadelphia to be so successful.”