Mission Moments


Being able to positively interact with those around us is an important skill, and at MSS, we may come into contact with anywhere from 15 to 100 different people throughout our day. Recently, we discussed building more trust and creating a positive approach into interactions we have with Lewis, someone who often reaches out for others but whose style isn’t always appreciated or well received. Thanks to recent staff efforts to reconnect with Lewis, both coaching and giving him opportunities for positive touch and interaction, he has blossomed. Lewis has responded by embracing the positive interactions, from fist pounds and handshakes to hugs, and continuing to have these interactions with his peers at MSS. A person centered, positive approach to issues has helped Lewis feel better about himself and express his needs positively to others.


Kelly’s dream is to become a receptionist. She loves to answer the phones at MSS, and dreams of one day working for a company answering phones and typing on the computer. Up until recently, Kelly did not understand why she was not a receptionist yet, or have an action plan to gain skills to become a receptionist. Now, Kelly has a Person-Centered outcome, which gives her many ideas for work she can do to build the skills needed to be a receptionist. In the one month she has been working on this, Kelly now knows that she is pretty good at dictating numbers, but needs to work on dictating names and word messages. She knows that she is able to recognize 25 of the 100 sight words, and is working on her reading and typing skills. For the first time in her life, Kelly is starting to understand the barriers she faces to becoming a receptionist, and has clear tasks and goals towards working to reduce those barriers. Kelly has never been more motivated to type, take messages, answer phones or learn to read and write. Her confidence is increasing, and she seems happy to be at MSS working towards her dream.

Community Connections

Brooklyn Park recently started volunteering with Meals on Wheels in the area. The people we serve are forming new relationships that are important to them and will hopefully open the door to new opportunities. After just one meeting with Meals on Wheels one of the volunteers who works closely with the people we serve decided to attend the Brooklyn Park Painting Party, an MSS fundraising event. This was a moment that showed all of us that making community connections truly matters.



Carolyn has voiced an increased desire to contribute to her community and earn a paycheck. Until recently, she would often talk about it, but would choose not to participate or would only stay engaged for short periods of time. As Carolyn has increased her time spent focused and engaged, she has been able to take on an increased workload at the center, her job at Famous Dave’s, and added weekly volunteering with Meals on Wheels. She arrives back from volunteering invigorated. Carolyn shares her stories with others throughout the center, encouraging them to also volunteer. As her paychecks from working have increased so has her motivation. She is now participating in eTrac job training to continue her success.

Cooking Group

Some of the folks in Apple Valley have been exploring cooking and creating new recipes in a weekly cooking group. They recently made a treat for the Caregiver Connections group and have come up with a few recipes to try in the future. The people participating in the group have learned to work together, share with others, clean up after themselves, and manage their time.

Whether it’s a chance to create art, a program to manage autism anxiety, or an opportunity to be productive in the working world, Midwest Special Services sees possibility for every one who crosses our threshold. See what we mean.
Did you Know Our Spring 2017 Newsletter is out!
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