Devereux program sees positive outcome for individuals at N.J. group home
At Devereux, our employees work tirelessly,
every day, to help the individuals we serve lead productive, positive and
Devereux New Jersey team members witnessed extremely rewarding outcomes as a
result of implementing the “Devereux Positive Behavioral Interventions and
Supports” (D-PBIS) methodology in one of its groups homes.
What is D-PBIS?
in 2011, D-PBIS is a framework that combines several initiatives under one
umbrella to create a system of support for individuals served by Devereux.
D-PBIS was designed for alternative settings, including schools and
residential/group care programs that assist individuals with emotional, behavioral
and cognitive differences. At
a high level, D-PBIS:
- Focuses on the
strengths of each individual, teaching and supporting desired behaviors to
create a positive environment;
- Provides the
opportunity to learn social / life skills and problem-solving skills, while
rewarding individuals for demonstrating positive, pro-social behavior; and
- Emphasizes learning
Learn more about D-PBIS
Billy’s story …
has been with Devereux N.J. since 2003; he lives in one of the organization’s
group homes. Diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, Billy was not vocally
active. He typically gave one-word responses, and only when prompted. Despite
many approaches over the years to improve his communication skills, Billy made
the introduction of D-PBIS at the group home in April 2017 and, within just a
few months, Billy began stringing words together to form short sentences.
part of D-PBIS, Devereux’s staff works closely with Billy to teach him certain
tasks, like how to ask for help. When he completes a given task, the team immediately
provides Billy with words of encouragement and support.
N.J. Behavior Specialist Sheirenne
Sherman, who has worked with Billy for many years, said he is now using
words to replace specific behaviors, which is a huge step forward in his
communication skill development.
the past, Billy would walk over to the TV and wait for someone to ask, ‘Do you
want the TV turned on?’” explained Sherman. “After we implemented D-PBIS, he
started using one-word responses more often. Then, as we closely monitored that
change, he started putting more words together and could say, ‘Hey lady, the
TV, come, the TV.’ This is a significant achievement for Billy! The progress
he’s making vocally has been an amazing thing to see first-hand.”
Positive change across
a direct result of D-PBIS, Sherman has also noted positive changes among others
living in the group home, including an individual who has significantly reduced
ongoing challenging/inappropriate behaviors and another individual who has
altogether eliminated challenging behaviors and instead, now uses communication
to express his emotions.
about helping someone understand how to change their behaviors for the better,”
added Sherman. “D-PBIS allows our staff to interact with the individuals we serve
in a way that ultimately reduces challenging behaviors – enabling them to live
and thrive in their communities. It’s a new way of learning and communicating –
and it absolutely works.”
N.J. will continue to expand the rollout of D-PBIS to eight additional group
homes by June 30, 2018. The goal is for all group homes to implement this
framework in mid-2019.
Learn about Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health.
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