A local guardianship program held a meet and greet event to introduce new board members Tuesday.
Volunteers for Adult Life Enhancement or V.A.L.E. is a volunteer adult guardianship program for adults in need including adults with developmental disabilities or mental health needs. V.A.L.E. program director Lee Hyland said the program has 16 volunteers responsible for taking care of 24 clients ranging in age from 24 to 90.
The program was founded in 2009.
Hyland said the purpose of Tuesday’s event was to let the community know what the organization is and what they do.
“We wanted to introduce V.A.L.E. to the community so that they’re understanding what we do and how we help the community, how we’re in need of volunteers and how we’re in need of financial support from the community,” Hyland said.
Tuesday’s event was also an opportunity to meet the group’s board of directors and advisory committee. Some of the newly named board of directors members include chairperson/president retired Judge John Newlin, vice chairperson/vice president Dr. David Higgins, and secretary/treasurer Lori Rose.
As a guardian, Hyland said a person is responsible for making sure the client is safe, healthy and doing the best they can do. As part of their lifetime commitment, guardians visit their client once a month, on their birthday and on holidays.
Hyland said the individuals are often referred to V.A.L.E. from different organizations including the Champaign County Board of Developmental Disabilities, Champaign Residential Services Inc., or Adult Protective Services.
Residents interested in becoming a volunteer can contact V.A.L.E. at 937-653-4865 or through email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nick Walton can be reached at 937-652-1331 Ext. 1777 or on Twitter @UDCWalton.