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What is Person Centered Planning?
Who would want a Person Centered Plan for themselves or for a legal dependant of theirs?
Anyone and everyone can benefit by having their own plan. Each life has several transition periods, and when those transitions come, many new challenges are introduced into all of our lives.

A plan is a team effort working to reach a common goal. A PCP plan can be compared to a recipe…you can have many ingredients that must be added at a prescribed time in a prescribed manner to achieve the finished product desired.
In order for a recipe to be successful:

  1. It must have the element of desirability for the one that will be enjoying its finished result.
  2. It must be a plan.
  3. It must have various ingredients included that each has a purpose in the plan. One ingredient does not make a recipe successful.
  4. It must be followed through with cooking actions that will insure its prescribed success.
  5. It will be judged for its finished result and decided if it is worth sharing with someone you love.

Person Centered Planning has proven to be an effective tool in mapping out a plan of action and supports for an individual in order to succeed in life decisions, dreams, and life needs. A plan can help to simplify the thought processes and then the follow through on the actions and the supports processes.

Why would individuals with Developmental Disabilities use PCP?
The expression, "It takes a village to raise a child," is never truer than when talking about a child with a disability.  People with disabilities need a support system that recognizes their individual strengths, interests, fears, and dreams and allows them to take charge of their future. Parents, teachers, family members, and friends in the community who offer informal guidance, support, and love can create the "village" for every child.
Yet when individuals with disabilities are preparing to make the transition from dependency to a life of independence, their "village" may be forgotten in the rush to secure new services from programs and systems that provide support for individuals with disabilities. Use of the person-centered planning process for the individuals with disabilities as they go through transition can unite formal and informal systems of support. By combining resources and working intentionally toward a common goal, families and professionals can achieve more positive outcomes for these individuals, while at the same time putting long-term community supports in place.