Meet Ronald Roberty, DSP – Without Walls (WOW) Program
Ronald has been working in the Jawonio Without Walls (WOW) Program since 2014, but has been working for Jawonio for the past 24 years. He started out working in the Community Living Services program at Katzen when it was an ICF Group Home. When the ICF location closed, he moved over to the Marasa House, and has worked at a few of the other CLS homes over the years. Ronald found out about Jawonio after a friend told him about the organization and its excellent reputation. At the time, he was working for another agency in New Jersey, and since he had heard wonderful things about Jawonio, he decided to apply.
“I really like the environment here, the participants and the staff. Working with the program participants is wonderful; they have such a good attitude and humor and want to learn new things. They are full of energy and make me laugh,” says Ronald. “One of the most rewarding parts of my job is to help the participants and see them make progress with their goals. It is wonderful to watch them feel good about what they are doing, like when they volunteer. It is also wonderful to see them gain new skills.”
Ronald’s day starts at about 8am when he picks up participants and drives them to the Program. The WOW Program spends most of its time out in the community. On Fridays, they plan for the following week’s schedule, and on Monday, the schedules are given out so all participants know what is coming up for the week. After touching base in the morning about the day’s activities, participants go on their morning outing. They usually have lunch out at around 12noon, then do an afternoon group. Participants split up on some days, as they have free choice in their activities. Then the day wraps up with an afternoon group, and everyone gets dropped home by 4pm. Ronald spends his days out in the community with participants at their various activities. They volunteer often, at organizations such as: the TOUCH program where WOW consumers will shop and deliver groceries for older and low-income individuals who cannot get out to shop for themselves; and visits to the Sunrise residence on North Main Street in New City once a week to help set up for lunch. They also go to the Jesse Kaplan School and New City Library to help out with their music programs. Participants attend Yoga, Zumba, and kick-boxing classes during the week to stay fit. To help them learn about how to manage their money, the Program will go with participants to the bank, where they learn to budget their money, how to pay for purchases at stores, and how to count and make sure they get the correct change. This is all part of helping them to achieve their independence, and be able to navigate their daily activities in the community outside of the Program.
“Ronald is always eager to hep and support everyone. He is very gentle and well-liked. His positive attitude always shows in his kind and respectful way of interacting with the participants, and they reflect back that respect to him. He is a wonderful part of our team,” says Elisa McGuire.
Thank you Ronald, and to all of our DSP staff, for making Jawonio the special and caring place that it is for the special people we provide care to!