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50 Years at Foothills Gateway: Walking the Road Together

October 04, 2022

Linda Drees is the current Secretary of the Foothills Gateway Board of Directors and, since 2003, has served on the Board for a total of almost 15 years.  More importantly, Linda is Marianna’s mother!  Marianna has received case management from Foothills Gateway since she was a child.  Today, Linda shares a bit of their journey and the support they have found from Foothills Gateway along the way. 

My adult special needs daughter, Marianna, has been served by case management at Foothills Gateway, Inc. (FGI) for more than two decades – from a small child in Children’s Extensive Services, to an adult in the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) DD Waiver.  This service has been a gift to Marianna and me.

All along this challenging and joyful road, Foothills Gateway staff have walked with us.  The moral support has been one of the greatest helps.  Marianna’s lack of language, self-injurious behavior, property destruction, and ability to take off clothes when upset never stopped FGI case managers from compassionately giving advice and providing options for services. They have cared for her for so long.

Foothills Gateway staff truly worked at person-centered planning for Marianna.  We have had excellent Program Approved Service Agencies (PASAs) which were found based on person-centered descriptions that described Marianna’s needs beautifully. I also could not have had a career or contributed to community service had our case managers not helped find just the right PASAS for Marianna.  Foothills Gateway is a full-service provider for people with IDD and their families.

Additionally, Marianna has remained at home during COVID.  She has been safe.  Knowing Marianna well, FGI case management has supported this choice and worked with her PASA to make this choice successful.

The next stop on our road is deciding where Marianna will live after Mother is no longer present.  A Personal Care Alternative or an Intentional Community is the best choice for Marianna. I know Foothills Gateway will work with me to consider how this can be done.  One thing we know about services for people with IDD, there is always change and I am comforted knowing that FGI is along for the ride.

I encourage all families with children or adults with IDD to reach out to Foothills Gateway, Inc. You will find case managers and service provision that will make your life better.

Thank you, Foothills Gateway.  Happy 50th Anniversary!

Linda R. Drees, mother of Marianna

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