Mobile VRS staffers receive a breakdown of SAIL programs

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Representatives of the State of Alabama Independent Living program visited the Mobile Vocational Rehabilitation Service office Friday, Aug. 16, to provide input on the services available, eligibility requirements, and referral process for SAIL.
The presentation was titled, “Cringles, Crossjacks, and Crows’ Nests: Finding Fair Winds and Following Seas.”

SAIL Director Lisa Alford said this is a continuation of a program presented to Children’s Rehabilitation Service offices.

“We really felt like it was important to do this with the VRS offices, particularly with our hybrid program, because (Homebound Program Specialist Lillian Butler) and I both came from VRS,” she said.

Alford previously served as a VRS counselor and supervisor and said she learned a lot when she made the move to SAIL.

Alford said she and Butler chose a nautical theme for their presentation because sailing can be complicated by fair and foul conditions. The same is true for the lives of consumers and their families.

Parents of children with significant disabilities face uncertainties over the lives of their children when they consider their lives after school, where they will go, and who will take care of them.

A person with a catastrophic injury faces their own fears when they realize nothing in their life fits them anymore.

“They can’t get into their car to go somewhere, they can’t get into their house, they can’t get in and out of their bathroom, they can’t get in and out of their bed, and they have no idea what is available and what can help them,” she said. “That’s the other reason we want to get our message out as much as we can.”

Throughout the program, Alford and Butler outlined SAIL’s independent living, homebound, waiver, and hybrid services. Each has different eligibilities and provides different services. They also addressed when to consider transferring a person from a VRS to a hybrid counselor.

Butler said this should be considered when:

  • The client has an open SAIL waiver or Homebound case
  • Discussions have taken place with SAIL staff that the client will be eligible for either the SAIL waiver or Homebound program and has an open SAIL waiver or Homebound case
  • It is early enough for the new counselor to get to know the client before beginning a training program
  • The SAIL director has been consulted and the file has been reviewed

A release of information form is not necessary to communicate with ADRS employees, but the client does need to know if you are involving others, Butler said.

Alford said to ask questions or make a hybrid referral, staff may email her at lisa.alford@rehab.alabama.gov.

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