P.E.P. Center News


From our house to yours: Best Wishes for Peace and Joy in the New Year.

One of the major concerns facing the Wayne County Community as we enter the New Year is the launch of the new Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority. This launch will include a reevaluation of the MCPN service delivery model and there is already a significant amount political posturing taking place on behalf of the MCPN’s. In addition, there will ongoing struggles to balance resources between programs for persons with substance abuse, mental illness and developmental disabilities

One of our roles is to be sure that whatever the new service delivery model looks like, it is measured by qualitative metrics concerning the real needs of individual people; not by blind ideology, one size fits all thought processes or rules to simplify administration.

One of the real short comings of the current Recipient Rights and Medicaid Appeal processes is that they treat each short coming as an isolated instance and have no provision for enforcing systemic change. If 5 of us filed successful claims around the same issue, there is nothing in place that assures that the 6th person will not have to go through the same process to receive the same services. In a customer driven business activity, the organization responsible for the Rights or Appeal violation would be responsible for fixing the process for everyone, not just the individual who happens to be vocal and effective in making a case.

There is no mechanism in the current process
·        for sharing and embellishing what is good --there is a lot positive that needs to be given recognition and nurtured
·        for pointing out what is systemically frustrating, wasteful and wrong
·        for gathering data on unmet needs as perceived by individuals rather than by the administration
·        and most importantly for publishing what we have done as individuals, family members, staff and administrators to obtain appropriate services for ourselves and for our loved ones.

Without this exchange of stories we are easily treated as individuals with bothersome problems rather than as partners in a process that needs to be corrected; we end up feeling marginalized and being treated as if we are the problem rather than part of the solution. And, of course, until there is organizational recognition of our issue, there is no administrative incentive to provide funding for it!

I have been approached by a group of families who feel that their family member’s needs for effective programs are not being met. I asked them to share their stories so we can all learn from them and possibly provide some assistance and get some organizational awareness within the new Authority. Possibly these first stories will encourage you to share your good news stories or stories of unmet needs or stories concerning battles won and lost in today’s process.
Here is the first of the stories; thanks to the Fosgard family!

I am writing this letter on behalf of my son, Cory Fosgard.  Cory is a 24 year old young man who has Down Syndrome.  He is severely cognitively impaired and nonverbal so his father and I are his voice.  We are blessed to have Cory in our family and plan to care for him for the rest of his life.  As he is aging out of school soon, we are planning for his future.  We are very concerned about the limiting of choices for Cory.
Cory has attended exercise class and other opportunities at the Pep Center in Livonia.  The staff is loving, caring and professional. They treat Cory with respect, and he enjoys his time there.  I had wanted to use this center for Cory’s respite dollars and for work opportunities after he graduates.  Unfortunately, Community Living Services will not allow his dollars to be used there.  They do not feel the program fits their “vision”.   I believe their slogan, “Your life your way” is hypocritical.  The life Cory enjoys is being denied by people who do not know him, or what is best for him.  Programs for persons with special needs are not one size fits all.
We have begun the process of switching to Synergy because they will allow Cory to use his dollars at the Pep Center.  It is unfortunate that we have to go through this because CLS refuses to listen to the people their decisions affect.  It is my hope that in the future people making policy for the developmentally disabled will truly listen to the people they serve.
Debbie Fosgard
Let us know your story; there are more to come and each of them is important!!!!

Ed Diegel,
Advocates for Persons with Developmental Disabilities in Wayne County.
and now at ddADVOCATES.com


Dorothy G.'s birthday was this past weekend. We celebrated today at the P.E.P. Center. Click HERE to check it out!


Update as of September 25th, 2012  1:57pm 

We have a client who has been with us since our program started that recently celebrated her 38th Birthday. Happy Birthday to Diana R.!!
We love having Diana in our program and look forward to celebrating many more birthdays.

Update as of July 3rd, 2012  11:06am
  We have experienced tremendous growth the past year. Thanks are definitely in order for all the parents/guardians who made the decision to keep their children/clients in our program while it was growing. Staff, Support Coordinators and Parents all make this program possible.


Update as of May 31, 2011  1:35pm

  The parents of one of our participants recently took the time to write a letter to us letting us know how their son has improved since joining our program. They have given us their permission to post the contents of the letter on our website.

To whom it may concern,

Since our son John has joined the P.E.P. Program, we have noticed a change in his personality. He is a lot more happy, more willing to express himself, and show a happiness with his life. He looks forward to the bus coming everyday, getting excited when we tell him it has arrived.

-Marshal & Pearl Hall

Update as of May 16, 2011  1:35pm

RED DAY!!!!!!!!!!

Keller Williams Realty
staff came to The P.E.P. Center for their annual Red Day event. The staff from Keller Williams took the whole day to volunteer their time performing various tasks including painting, gardening and cleaning.

Take a look at the pictures at the bottom of the page to see Keller Williams staff giving back to their community. We are greatly appreciative to have a company like Keller Williams Realty in our community. Other companies that contributed to the day include,

Pinter's Flowerland located in Livonia, MI - Pinter's sold us flowers for the front of our building at a deeply discounted price.

Livonia Kiwanis Club
- Kiwanis Club reimbursed us for the expenses we incurred purchasing materials and flowers for our building.

Thanks go out to those companies as well for their contributions. It would NOT have been possible without them.

Update as of May 06, 2011  10:16am
Our Day Program (Skill Building Program) has experienced tremendous growth this year. We would like to take the opportunity to thank our participants and parents for their patience during the process we have gone through this past year in contracting with Synergy and growing our program. Thanks also goes out to Synergy Partners LLC. Synergy has been an excellent Managed Care Provider to work with. They have competent staff and any of our questions our concerns are addressed promptly. We encourage you to consider Synergy Partners. Visit their website by clicking HERE.

To help our consumers better understand the structure of the community mental health system, I am posting this chart. This chart details the flow of your tax dollars and should help you to better understand the process.
you can view this chart by clicking HERE

Update as of February 18, 2011  01:15pm
As many of you know, several weeks ago a LIvonia Police Officer was killed in the line of duty. Our students and staff took the time to make and sign cards to be sent to the Livonia Police Department and to the family of the officer. The Livonia Police Department replied by letter a few days later to express their thanks. You can read that letter by clicking HERE. We ask that you keep Officer Nehasil's family in your prayers during this difficult time.

Update as of February 18, 2011  10:12pm

  The P.E.P. Center was recently featured in an article in the Livonia Observer. You can CLICK
HERE to go to to the Observer's website and view the article. The link is currently unavailable. Downloadable form to follow soon.

Update as of February 07, 2011  11:05am

  Earlier today the staff over at ddadvocates.com took the time to draft a press release for us that talks about what we do here as well as some of our recent accomplishments. DD Advocates will be sending out this press release to a couple of their media contacts. We would like to thank them for taking the time to draft this release. You can read the press release by clicking

Update as of February 07, 2011  10:36am

 The P.E.P. Center has recently been featured in a blog on ddadvocates.com. ddadvocates.com is run by Ed Diegel who is a leading figure in the special needs community. CLICK HERE to read the blog and learn more about us! you can also go directly to ddadvocates.com by clicking HERE. I encourage you to take a look around on their website. You will find some very useful and interesting information on their website.

Update as of February 03, 2011  1:18pm

 As you can see below on January 18th we posted a letter from a transition coordinator at Cooke School in Northville, MI that touched on some issues with C.L.S. or "Community Living Services". Today I am posting a letter from a parent of a C.L.S. consumer. This parent gives her thoughts and opinions on C.L.S. and other programs like ours in the area. These first hand accounts of other programs in the area once again raise the question of why C.L.S. has chosen not to work with us. CLICK HERE to read the letter. Due to Privacy Laws, all personal identifying information such as names and ages have been removed.

Update as of February 03, 2011  12:07pm

 One of the aspects of our program here at The P.E.P. Center that we are going to begin to focus more on is community integration for our participants. One of the things that the staff will be doing is making contact with local business's and inquiring about volunteer work for our clients that would eventually lead to part time employment. You can read the text of the letter that we will be providing to local business owners explaining our business and programs by clicking HERE

Update as of January 18, 2011  1:34pm

 As far as our progress goes with contracting with the various managed care providers in the area, we have made progress with M.O.R.C. and we are currently contracted with Synergy. We have not been so lucky with C.L.S. You can CLICK HERE to read more and draw your own conclusions. This will give you a behind the scenes look of the other "factors" at play in the system. The lady that started this letter writing campaign is the transition coordinator at Cooke School in Northville, MI and has many years of experience in this industry.


----Below I have posted comments that I received via email from a concerned parent----

Comments : Cindy, I just read the letter addressed to Mr Dehem. I am not with C.L.S.- but I have a (removed due to privacy laws) that is (removed due to privacy laws). and I couldn't agree more with all the comments in that letter. I think all this community stuff has gone way overboard. What does it prove parading people around to the humane society to the malls to nursing homes. Many times the consumers couldn't care less. My (removed due to privacy laws) just enjoys being with a group of people like (removed due to privacy laws) doing crafts watching movies, exercising etc etc. It can be great fun being with a group of people more so then being out alone with an adult. Also, unless a program has a van with a lift it is not safe taking consumers out of their wheelchairs and hauling them in and out of vans just because they have to be out in the community. When they leave their home they are getting out. Our seniors go to the senior center spend a good part of the day there with their peers -why is this O.K. for them but people with d.d. need to be out 80% of the time. I am a homemaker. There are many days I don't get out at all. Where did we get this that because my (removed due to privacy laws) is (removed due to privacy laws) needs to be paraded around the community 80% of the time. Many of these places she doesn't even understand what it is all about. I think all the money we are spending on this would be better spent improving programs and making more of them available to families so we could have more choices. When are some of these people that are suppose to be helping us realize that some individuals are very low functioning, totally dependent they can't work, don't even understand the concept. Often they don't understand if they are at the mall or at the humane society. The families need a break-or they both need to work. I think C.L.S. should contract with P.E.P. and let the consumers and their families decide what they want.


WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP: After clicking the above link and reading the letter from Holly, please CLICK HERE to go to our contact form and fill it out with your information and comments on the issue.

Update as of January  27, 2011 

 The P.E.P. Center has found a new location here in the Livonia area! Our new location is much more accessible and accommodating to our participants needs. We at The P.E.P. Center believe that the changes we have made over the past year including our new partnership with Synergy Partners LLC and our decision to relocate have positioned us to better service our participants and enabled us to obtain the necessary resources to grow and serve more clients. If you would like to tour our new location please call 734-524-0378 and we will be happy to show you all that we have to offer.

  Keller Williams Red Day 2011 pics


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