Please click, download and print for free Making a Contribution Workbook  It can be used in a number of different support person-centered practices, explore personal preferences to build positive behavior supports or even to work on skill building with staff.

What are Person-Centered Practices?

Person-Centered Practices include both “person-centered thinking” and “person-centered planning.”

To be person-centered means treating individuals with dignity and respect; building on their strengths and talents; helping people connect to their community and develop relationships; listening and acting on what the individual communicates; taking time to know and understand individuals and the things that make them unique.  Person-centered thinking involves a deep respect for individuals and their equality.  Person-centered planning involves a process and approach for determining, planning for and working toward what an individual with a disability or an older adult wants for his or her future. 

Don’t we already do Person-Centered Planning?  It is built into all our work.

Many providers believe that the work they are currently doing is “Person-Centered.”  While the person being served may be the focus of activity, it does not necessarily mean that they are the one who is directing the activity. 

Person-centered care planning involves the use of new tools and strategies with which most providers are not familiar. A critical aspect is the inclusion of the person’s natural supporters in the care planning process; articulation of clearly defined short- and long-term personal goals with measurable objectives; assignment of responsibility for different tasks and action steps to different members of the care team including the person in recovery; and use of tools such as psychiatric advanced directives, shared decision-making aids, and supported employment, housing, socialization, and education coaches.  (Tondora, et al)

Tools and techniques that can assist with getting to know what is important to a person: 

Types of Person-Centered Planning Tools (click here to access)

Person centered planning is a way of expressing a set of inclusive values through a unique range of tools and techniques. Two commonly used person centered tools - MAPS and PATH - create a hands-on demonstration of these values in action. All person centered planning tools and processes are driven by a commitment to achieve inclusive outcomes for the person whose plan it is, and the people involved are always present throughout their Planning session. 

The Person Centered Planning Education Site (click here to access)

Person-centered planning is a process-oriented approach to empowering people with disability labels. It focuses on the people and their needs by putting them in charge of defining the direction for their lives, not on the systems that may or may not be available to serve them. This ultimately leads to greater inclusion as valued members of both community and society.

Pathfinding:  Planning Alternative Tomorrows with Hope  (click here to access)

PATH is a powerful person centered planning tool, a process, a journey. It is built around a central focus person called the Pathfinder. The Pathfinder comes together with their allies with a commitment to plan and action a positive, desirable and possible future for themselves. 

An additional resource with copies available at all Area Offices is -  Elements of Design: Frameworks for Facilitating Person-Centered Planning by Patty Cotton, M.Ed available at:  

The Importance of Environment (Click here to access)

 This article by Michael Smull and Mary Lou Bourne provides a consistent framework for evaluating a person's environment.  It is a helpful continuum for thinking about what needs to be present or absent.

Using Person-centered Practices within Organizations and teams (click here to access)

Person-centred organisations use person-centred practices to deliver the best possible service to the people they support, and use the commitment and talents of their staff to achieve this. Traditionally person-centred practices have consisted of tools and approaches that have been seen as only relevant to use with people who use services. We think that delivering great outcomes for people can only be delivered through using the same person-centred practices with staff, and within the structures and processes of the organization.