Strategic Plan

Fiscal Year 2019 Goals


Monitor the three-year strategic plan for ADAI, increase the number of dogs that are in training, while developing funding for a new dog training facility on campus.

Support the development of a new strategic plan for 2020, which is transformational in nature and involves broad community engagement.

Be the advocacy voice for the disability community focusing on Housing, Transportation, Health care, and Accessibility in public agencies.

Provide programming that supports students and adults with disabilities in pursuing life transition goals; such as school to work and moving from institution to the community.

Executive Director

Increase the organization’s financial resources.

  • Work with the Development Committee to focus efforts of major gifts.
  • Support the Chair of the Development Committee in refocusing the role of the committee.
  • Work with the Grants Manager to maintain existing grants.
  • Work with Directors to honor our donors and show appreciation.

Move the organization toward data-driven management.

  • Work with Director of Human Resources to produce aggregated outcomes reports in January and July.
  • Ensure the development of outcome measures for all new program initiatives prior to starting the program and in collaboration with the Program Committee Chair.
  • Recruit an Associate Director to work with the ED in developing a pathway for succession.

Research and build the benchmark measures for creating the most inclusive community in the country.

  • Investigate collaborative opportunities to work with the Institute for Community Inclusion in developing research behind this endeavor.
  • Work with experts in housing, transportation, employment, etc., to identify their standards for best practices in their field.
  • Begin investigating the process and people we will engage in the strategic planning process for 2019.


Expand and improve the foster, breeding, and school therapy programs.

Work with Gus Harrison Prison to successfully build the new prison program

  • Hire a Satellite Training Coordinator.
  • Interview and establish the new Level 2 training team that will continue training the prison dogs once they are out of the puppy stage.
  • Communicate weekly with the prison to troubleshoot any issues that arise when starting a new program.

Work with North Central Ohio Educational Service Center (NCOESC) to troubleshoot our new school therapy dog training program.

  • Collaborate with NCOESC Program Coordinator to establish training guidelines and schedule.
  • Create a program plan for the flow of these school therapy dogs through graduation, ensuring proper exposure within the school systems.
  • Troubleshoot program as problems arise.
  • Investigate feasibility of teleconsulting technology to save training commute time.

Continue coordination of fosters.

  • Outreach to Lenawee County to recruit a minimum of ten furloughs for the prison program.
  • Create an outreach plan for 2019 recruitment of volunteers that contains a minimum of monthly activities.
  • Meet with current fosters/furloughs to explain new dog raising model. Update website to reflect new dog raising model.

Lower procurement cost

  • Establish a breeding MOU with our Breeding Coordinator.
  • Continue relationship with ABC Breeding Collaborative.

Life Skills

Successfully transition youth with disabilities to independent living by providing a unique “step-forward” system designed to guide young people through graduated stages of increased self-sufficiency.

Provide youth transition programming to 120 consumers through independent living skills and employment readiness classes.

  • Review curriculum and adjust content based on pre-tests and post-tests from last year’s results.
  • Schedule outreach presentations in 20 schools to increase referral sources for the program.
  • Host Life Skills open house in spring of 2019 for teachers, school administrations, and potential consumers.

Human Resources

Increase the number of qualified individuals with disabilities who are available to work at ACT. Connect with other agencies and resources in the community who work with people with disabilities.

  • Work with Kim Nielsen at the University of Toledo, providing internships to students in the Disability Studies program.
  • Provide internship opportunities each semester to disabled students interested in working in the Independent Living field or learning more about Independent Living.
  • Once the internship is completed, they will share their experience with Life Skills students during a class.

Disability Awareness Training

Revise training to reflect best practices.

  • Revamp content to include informational action steps for participants.
  • Offer trainings as requested.
  • Create a certificate to give to all participants.
  • Further investigate CEUs.

Information and Referral

Continue to improve the efficacy of our Information and Referral Services.

  • Create and implement a standard for documentation related to rehab outreach in order to ensure all contacts are captured.
  • Develop a five-question survey for I&R callers to assist in identifying their risk of institutionalization.


Continue to build our Volunteer program.

  • Conduct an annual volunteer survey to gather programmatic feedback.
  • Review and update current format of New Volunteer Orientation.
  • Create and implement monthly strategies for new volunteer recruitment.
  • Implement a minimum of three volunteer appreciation strategies.
  • Collaborate with Human Resources to update policies and procedures and update the background check process.
  • Ensure recruitment goals align with need.


Establish consistent messaging and outreach presentation content to educate the community about ACT programming.

  • Create one program brochure that includes all of The Ability Center’s programs. Another “Call to Action” brochure will be created to share opportunities to volunteer and get connected to our organization.
  • Emphasis will be placed on firming up outreach efforts, including adding a speaker request form on the website with speaker bios.
  • A messaging document will be finalized and added to the Branding Guidelines document that includes program descriptions and talking points for each program.

Outcome Measurement

Use the Outcome Measurement process to determine program effectiveness, consumer satisfaction, and to influence any changes in programming or data collection methods.

  • Ensure that we are gathering the appropriate data necessary in the new database for funder reporting.
  • Review consumer survey questions and make necessary changes to capture data for measuring consumer satisfaction.
  • Review outcome measurement results to determine program effectiveness.
  • Meet with Directors monthly to discuss outcome measurement, consumer outcomes, and performance management.

Home Accessibility Program (HAP)

Serve 105 of our greatest at-risk applicants with critical home modifications, following our three-tier prioritization schedule.

  • Needed for Transition
  • Needed for Diversion** (Medicaid eligible)
  • Needed for Diversion (At-risk but not Medicaid eligible)

Identify 60 other at-risk HAP applicants and funnel them to HRC’s Diversion service.

  • Establish an at-risk screen that can be integrated into consumer database. (Olmstead scale and ILRU’s at-risk tool).
  • Create internal operational procedures for identification, consumer interaction, and Community Living Coordinator (CLC) services offered.
  • Measure the number impacted at the end of the year; ensure risk and diversion data is included in outcome and funder reports.

Provide a holistic approach to service delivery, offering DME and CLC services as an option to all consumers served by HAP, thereby improving sustainability.

  • Establish inter-departmental operational procedures.
  • Assign accountability.
  • Measure the number impacted at the end of the year; ensure risk and diversion data is included in outcome and funder reports.

**Diversion: This IL core service assists individuals to avoid institutional placement and promote community-based living.

Community Living (Formerly known as Nursing Home Transition)

Transition 30 consumers from institution living to community-based living, achieving 90 days of sustainability.

  • Continue HOME Choice (HC).
  • If available, apply to become a state service provider for transition services post-HC Demonstration.
  • Utilize Recovery Requires a Community funding through the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services to provide transition services.

Provide Diversion services.

  • Research and develop internal operational procedures for best practice Diversion services.
  • Work with Home Accessibility Program in identifying those at greatest risk of institutional placement; service numbers dependent upon HOME Choice.
  • Identify funding opportunities for Diversion services (Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority, Ohio Department of Medicaid).

Measure 365-day success as an indicator of program achievement.

  • Provide five face-to-face meetings within the 90-day window.
  • Provide monthly telephone or face-to-face contact post-90-day transition; must have at minimum one face-to-face meeting within the 90-365 day window.
  • Identify systemic barriers to successful IL.

Community Living Coordinator

Implement face-to-face interactive consumer in-home meetings leading to informed choice and achievable consumer goals

  • Develop informed choice/service needs identification punch list (focusing on mitigating at-risk factors, defined by ILRU).
  • Measure the number of consumers impacted; ensure risk and diversion data is included in outcome and funder reports.
  • Develop Diversion measurement analytics.

  • Research best practice or develop a model that provides diversion benefits data (possible sellable service/saves money).
  • Ensure outcomes are accounted for in consumer database and are easily exported to potential funders, policymakers, and PR/Marketing.

Equipment Loan

Transition the Equipment Loan program under the umbrella of the HRC.

  • Review all Durable Medical Equipment (DME) operations, determine a path to reach ACT’s highest community impact and celebrate ACT’s return on investment.
  • Develop a process that ensures DME is consistently made available to all HAP consumers where gaps in service delivery cannot be reasonably met.
  • Establish a position (volunteer?) that works to assist the Equipment Loan Coordinator in the cleaning and inventory of all DME.


To impact systems and policy that ensures people with disabilities have the ability to sustain independence in a community of their choosing.

Continue to focus on our four priority areas concentrating on systemic outcomes that benefit people with disabilities.

  • Housing: New and altered multi-unit compliance, single family best practice models, education and enforcement activities.
  • Transportation: County-wide sales tax = County-wide coverage.
  • Healthcare: Access to waiver services as well as influence policy/rules/regulations.
  • Accessibility: ADA Coordinator education and outreach, improvements to Title II and III accessibility.