Taking a Leap of Faith
TECH opened their doors in 1973 focusing on work opportunities and quickly realized that there was an unmet need in Reno County for residential services for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities.
In a previous interview, Maurice Cummings, the first President and CEO of TECH said, “We wanted to be in a neighborhood. RCOC was the second facility in the state that had a residential program. Parents were very cautious and really took a leap of faith so that their sons or daughters could live in the community. Our job was to provide as much security and assurance as we could. We worked hard at that.”
In the mid-90’s, Stephanie Drews and her family took that leap of faith and she moved into one of our first group homes. Stephanie felt it was time to start a life of her own and with the help of her family, she decided that group living at TECH was the right fit for her.
As a member of the group home, Stephanie always found ways to contribute around the house. She loved to help with driven by a desire to work and be active cleaning and was the first to volunteer to go along for house errands. Stephanie is within TECH. While living in residential services, she also worked at the TECH Work Center, participated in the Adult Life Skills Program and fell in love with painting at the TECH Art Studio.
“Stephanie is passionate about everything she enjoys doing and the people she loves spending time with,” says Ciera Tiedtke, Manager of Residential Services. “Stephanie lights up when she’s working or around her friends at the ALS.”
While she has slowed down a bit, taking advantage of TECH’s Retirement Living options, one thing you can be sure of is that nothing will stand in the way of her making her dreams a reality, no matter how big or small they may be.
Nearly 30 years after coming to TECH, Stephanie is the same eager, independent woman with a desire to make it on her own. We are honored that TECH gets to be a part of her story.
Letter from Stephanie’s Sister
Stephanie has always wanted to be a part of things, to be included, to work, to have friends, and to be recognized for her talents and contributions. She loved making new friends with other TECH clients and staff members. Stephanie has especially enjoyed bowling and attending events such as concerts and plays with her TECH family. She looked forward every week to painting in the TECH Art Studio, and was thrilled when she sold the paintings she created. She was proud of working and earning a paycheck.
Stephanie also shared a dream of working at a job out in the community like her sisters. TECH helped make this dream come true. They helped Stephanie find a job at a nursing home working in their laundry and at a local business shredding their documents. This gave Stephanie a connection to the community and made her feel like she was contributing.
Thank you to everyone at TECH who helped and encouraged Stephanie to try her best, who took care of her when she was sick, and who kept her going during the ups and downs of life.
Sister of Stephanie Drews
See photos from Stephanie’s time with TECH below.