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October Employee of the Month

It’s a new month, which means a new employee of the month!

Congratulations to October’s Employee of the Month, Andy Gaither. Did we mention he is an individual served at MRI? Andy started at MRI back in 1994 and will be celebrating his 25th anniversary this October as a license plate technician.

Andy was nominated for employee of the month by fellow coworkers back in license plates. Andy was nominated because “he is very friendly and tries his best at everything he does. He is always willing to help others even when not asked. He goes above and beyond in the plates area”.

Congratulations, Andy! You deserve this award!

Meaningful Meadows Mural

 

It was a fun summer at MRI! While the finishing touches were happening on MRI’s Meaningful Meadows, the 1.5 acre innovative outdoor activity center, the individuals served, MRI staff, volunteers from the community and Eric Weatherford got started on the beautiful mural concept that Eric and all the persons served created and decided upon back in June.

“Eric did a great job in designing an artistic piece that really affected the child in us but was not for children,” said Amy Bliefnick, CEO/President at MRI.

With the help of MRI staff, volunteers and persons served at MRI, the project took about a week to complete, with Eric taking a second a final week finishing the fine details of the mural.

It turned out wonderful! Eric did an amazing job capturing what Meaningful Meadows is and the individuals served were so happy and excited to help Eric bring the mural to life. MRI can’t thank Eric enough for his amazing work in Meaningful Meadows!

This program was partially supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Illinois Arts Council Agency, and the Decatur Area Arts Council.

Scroll below to see pictures from the process of painting the mural to the final product!

 

 

   

Meaningful Meadows Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

 

Macon Resources, Inc. (MRI) held their ribbon cutting ceremony yesterday, September 24, for their innovative outdoor activity center for adults with developmental disabilities, Meaningful Meadows.  Meaningful Meadows is one of the most unique inclusive recreational areas offered in the state of Illinois for adults with developmental disabilities.

Meaningful Meadows has the following features throughout the acre and a half park:

  • Exercise – features include a walking path, basketball & pickle ball court, splash pad, and putting green
  • Sensory – includes a waterfall, chimes, butterfly garden, plants and flowers, a sound board, and human“car wash”
  • Escape – features several different quiet and relaxing areas around Meaningful Meadows

“Exercise, physical fitness, fresh air, all helps with the education,” said Amy Bliefnick, CEO/President of MRI. “It helps us to be sharper and smarter, learn easier, and helps us enjoy life a little more.”

Karina Hayes, a client at MRI said “It gives us a chance to experience what nature is and interact with others.”

300 guests joined MRI to help celebrate the grand opening of Meaningful Meadows. It was a fun-filled day full of smiles, laughter and tons of fun activities happening in the outdoor activity center once the ribbon was cut. The persons served were playing basketball and pickle ball on their new basketball and pickle ball court. Families enjoyed swinging together on the wheelchair swings and playing with the musical chimes. Snack stations were placed around the entire walking path for guests to enjoy and giving them the chance to see what Meaningful Meadows has to offer for adults with developmental disabilities.

It was an amazing day at MRI!

Click here to learn more about Meaningful Meadows!

Continue scrolling to see more pictures from the ribbon cutting ceremony of Meaningful Meadows.

FREE Infant Massage Class

Christmas Luncheon 2018

Food-Family-Friends 

Each year MRI hosts a Christmas luncheon for the people we serve and their family/guardians. The lunch is a wonderful event to welcome families into our building and have an opportunity to interact with friends and family and our staff .

Prior to the lunch we had a prayer provided by individuals served at MRI. Shortly after the prayer there was a special message from MRI President/CEO Amy Bliefnick. Amy welcomed the guests and announced an exciting event coming up in February.

February 8th marks the date of Night To Shine, a prom for individuals with special needs ages 14+. The Tim Tebow foundation proudly sponsors the event and helps to make this evening as extravagant as possible. More information on the event is to come shortly so be sure to keep your eye out for more information on how to be a part of this event.

Give to Meaningful Meadows on #GivingTuesday

 

This #GivingTuesday MRI is raising funds for Meaningful Meadows, our new innovative outdoor activity center for adults with developmental disabilities. Meaningful Meadows will provide our individuals an inclusive space to create new experiences, provide new opportunities to learn, promote their physical well-being, boost creativity, reduce stress and anxiety, and connect to their community, all while being accessible.

We are hoping to break ground this fall and every donation will bring us closer to our goal. Meaningful Meadows will give our individuals new opportunities to explore their passions, grow, be more independent, and achieve a higher sense of self-worth.

Make a donation: https://www.ilgive.com/organizations/mri

Fundraise for MRI: https://donations.fb.com/giving-tuesday/

Thank you for your support in helping us build meaningful lives!

MRI Celebrates National Kindness Day

Wednesday, November 14 MRI Celebrated National Kindness Day!

MRI’s Day Training groups spent National Kindness Day by spreading kindness throughout the building! Individuals had the opportunity to write positive messages on sticky notes and post them throughout the building, and we even had a booth set up where they could write a kind message on the table. One of the Day Training participants had the idea to write letters thanking members of our military so we had a table for that as well.

It was a great day of spreading kindness!

national kindness day macon resources

 

MRI Announces Outdoor Activity Center, Meaningful Meadows

Decatur, IL – Macon Resources, Inc. (MRI) held a kickoff event on Thursday, October 4 to celebrate their newly renovated gym and announce a new addition to the MRI campus, Meaningful Meadows, an innovative outdoor activity center for adults with developmental disabilities. Meaningful Meadows will be one of the most unique inclusive recreational areas offered in the state of Illinois for adults with developmental disabilities. Construction on the activity center will start this fall with plans for completion by the start of summer 2019.

Meaningful Meadows will include the following features throughout the acre and a half park:

  • Exercise – features include a walking path, basketball court, and splash pad
  • Sensory – includes a small pond, chimes, butterfly garden, plants and flowers, a sound board, and “car wash”
  • Occupational – includes bird baths, planters, and a weather station, which will give clients the opportunity to be employed through feeding the birds and taking care of the grounds
  • Escape – features several different quiet and relaxing areas around the grounds
  • Social – consists of sitting areas, an outside classroom, and a spot for yard games

“This outdoor activity space is an innovative, creative and exciting addition to the services we offer for the people we serve,” said Amy Bliefnick, CEO/President of MRI. “The ability to utilize the outdoor space with sensory and exercise opportunities is much needed and highly anticipated.”

“The activity center will be very incredible,” said Carl, a client at MRI. “I like all of the activities we have at MRI, and the new outdoor activity center will help us be better physically and spiritually.”

ABOUT MRI
MRI is a non-profit organization in Decatur, Illinois, that provides services to promote the growth, independence, and self-worth of children and adults with disabilities. Established in 1988 through the consolidation of Progress Resource Center and Macon County Rehabilitation facilities, today, MRI has grown to be the largest provider of services for adults and children with cognitive, intellectual or developmental disabilities in the region with 270 employees that serve over 800 adults and children through programming such as: children’s prevention and home visiting, day care, after-school care, summer camps, case management, residential services, life skills training, vocational training, job placement, and volunteerism to achieve a meaningful place in our community.

Contact: Rachel Barter
MRI PR and Development Manager
(217) 875-8850
RBarter@maconresources.org

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Macon Resources Achieves Person-Centered Excellence Accreditation

Decatur, IL – The CEO of Macon Resources (MRI), Amy Bliefnick, today announced that MRI has been awarded the four-year Person-Centered Excellence Accreditation from CQL | The Council on Quality and Leadership. This award confirms that the organization embraces person-centered solutions to improve the quality of life for people receiving supports and services.

MRI is a non-profit organization that provides services to promote the growth, independence, and self-worth of children and adults with disabilities. MRI is the largest provider of services for adults and children with cognitive, intellectual or developmental disabilities in the region with 170 employees that serve over 800 adults and children through programming such as: children’s prevention and home visiting, day care, after-school care, summer camps, case management, residential services, life skills training, vocational training, job placement, and volunteerism to achieve a meaningful place in our community.

“We strive everyday to promote the growth, independence, and self-worth of children and adults with disabilities”, said Bliefnick. “On behalf of the 270 employees at Macon Resources we are so proud to receive accreditation as this validates that we provide the best standards and quality of care that we can for the individuals we serve.”
When MRI partnered with CQL to pursue accreditation, it undertook a rigorous process to review and improve supports and services.

The efforts of MRI were focused on empowering the people who receive supports to pursue what really matters in their lives, and achieve their personally-defined outcomes.
MRI has been awarded CQL accreditation as a result of demonstrating proficiency in the following areas:

  • Basic Assurances® Ensuring fundamental safeguards related to health, safety and human security
  • Personal Outcome Measures® Supporting and empowering people to achieve their goals and dreams
  • Person-Centered Excellence Demonstrating organizational commitment to continued enhancement of systems

“CQL commends MRI for its success in increasing the quality of life for the people it supports. We are pleased to partner with them on this journey of ongoing organizational transformation,” states Mary Kay Rizzolo, president and CEO of CQL.

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Contact: Rachel Barter
Public Relations and Development Manager
p. 217.875.8850 | e. rbarter@maconresources.org

CQL | The Council on Quality and Leadership is an international non-profit, virtual organization dedicated to the definition, measurement and improvement of personal quality of life. CQL’s vision is a world of dignity, opportunity and community for all people. Learn more about CQL by visiting: www.c-q-l.org

MRI is a non-profit organization in Decatur, Illinois, that provides services to promote the growth, independence, and self-worth of children and adults with disabilities. Established in 1988 through the consolidation of Progress Resource Center and Macon County Rehabilitation facilities, today, MRI has grown to be the largest provider of services for adults and children with cognitive, intellectual or developmental disabilities in the region with 270 employees that serve over 800 adults and children through programming such as: children’s prevention and home visiting, day care, after-school care, summer camps, case management, residential services, life skills training, vocational training, job placement, and volunteerism to achieve a meaningful place in our community.

Talk Time with Rachel – Meet Ryan

Meet Ryan

Ryan is a MRI Day Training Participant. He loves coming to Macon Resources and spending time with his best friend Robert. (Ryan wanted us to add, “Yes, we hug.”) Ryan also enjoys spending time with his group leader and case manager. He likes that they are, “helpful and trustworthy,” and above all, they are nice!

Ryan also likes sports! He enjoys football, basketball and, most of all, baseball. His favorite professional baseball team is the Chicago Cubs. During Ryan’s interview, when asked why they were his favorite team he simply replied, “Because Cubbies rule!” He enjoys taking walks in the park to see what activities are going on and to see the ducks at the pond.

All in all, Ryan sees himself as respectful, trust worthy and friendly. He is sure to put a smile on your face!

Read more “Talk Time with Rachel” interviews on the Blog.

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