Parham recognized for services as direct support professional
The North Carolina Council on Developmental Disabilities recently gave individuals an opportunity to officially honor the front-line staff that provides their services, enabling one local woman to be recognized for her work.
National Direct Support Professionals Recognition Week was Sept. 8 to 14, and in observance, Donna Gregory, a resident at The Arc of Haywood County, nominated Sarah Parham, of Clyde.
"Sarah is always reaching out to give me physical and mental assistance," Gregory wrote in her nomination. "She is a warm and caring individual who makes a difference in my daily life. Her smile and outgoing personality makes any day more pleasant. Sarah is an asset to the lifestyle of each person she comes in contact with throughout each day. We are very fortunate to have Sarah as our direct support professional."
Parham, who has worked at the Arc for five years, assists residents with basic living skills such as cooking, cleaning and laundry, and also helps with recreation and leisure activities for those under her care.
"[The nomination] means a lot," she said. "This job is very rewarding in itself, but to have someone else recognize [me] is very exciting."
The Arc, located at 407 Welch St. in Waynesville, provides shared living opportunities for adults with developmental disabilities in three supported living homes and one intermediate care facility home. Each home is shared by individuals; Parham, for example, works with five residents in one of the homes and encourages both independent living and community participation.
"Everyone here loves her and thinks she's great," said Lea Davis, Parham's supervisor. "She's enriched so many lives, and everyone really appreciates what she does."