PERSON CENTERED PLANNING
A method of planning stemmed from a person-centered perspective, which seeks to listen, discover and understand the individual. It is a process directed by the person that helps us to learn how they want to live and describes what supports are needed to help them move toward a life they consider meaningful and productive.
The planning process empowers the person by building on their individual abilities and skills, building a quality lifestyle that supports the person in finding ways to contribute to their community. Other factors which impact the individual's life, such as health and wellness, are also considered during the planning process.
Knowing and exploring opportunities to use a person’s skills and abilities helps to set a direction while providing positive motivation, and increasing the likelihood of achieving the desired outcomes that are most important to the person receiving supports.
DISCOVERING WHAT'S IMPORTANT
Person centered planning is a discovery process used to search out what is truly important to and about a person and what capacities and skills that individual possesses. It is values based with the knowledge that each and every individual has unique capacities and skills.
It focuses on a positive vision for the future of the person based on his or her strengths, preferences, and capacities for acquiring new skills, abilities, and personality. It focuses on what a person can do versus what a person cannot do.
A step-by-step process by a trained facilitator is used to help gather relevant information about a person. Each step contributes to discovering a fuller picture of that person.
The individual is always at the center of the person centered planning process. They are as involved in the planning process as they want to be or are able to be. The planning process is best accomplished when it includes other people who also know the person well and believe in their vision.
A group engagement process explores what the person considers to be most important in their current life, which is often shaped by their history and their plans for their personal future. This discovery process emphasizes active listening with a focus on capacities, skill identification and acquisition.
The person centered process helps to identify desired personal outcomes based on the individual’s life goals, interests, strengths, abilities, desires, and preferences. The process helps to determine the supports and services that the individual needs to work towards to achieve these outcomes and, accordingly, develops a plan that directs the provision of these supports. This includes:
These strategies encompass staffing support and service needs that are provided by natural or community supports that already exist in a person’s life. The person centered plan is a tool that helps our Individuals figure out what they want & need , and helps us identify the kinds of supports necessary for them to achieve their desired outcomes.
IMPLEMENTING THE PLAN
Working together with a unified focus on a short and long-term vision for the person’s life is developed and ultimately put in place for the person to explore and learn what works for him or her. A person’s true life takes many paths.
Discovery does not happen once or all at once; sometimes it comes in pieces, or new discoveries are uncovered with each new capacity, new relationship, or new direction. Person centered plans are updated when the individual wants to make changes, or when a goal or aspiration is achieved. In simple terms, person centered planning is a method of forming life plans that are centered on the individual for whom they are built and meet the person where they are at various times in their life.
Person centered thinking challenges us all to actively listen to the people we serve and to those who know them best in order to understand what they want for their lives. This enables us to help support the individual in ways that will increase their success at living as independently as they are able, and allows them to contribute to the extent they choose to community life.
A person centered approach moves us from system-centered thinking, which often focused on custodial care, treatment, filling slots/beds, placements, and closures, to a focus on identifying, focusing on, and meeting a person’s desired experiences for a quality of life while ensuring that these experiences or outcomes occur daily in their lives.