2021 Annual Report: Meeting the Need

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Moving Forward Together

We want our community to know we are stronger than ever and ready to meet the evolving needs of individuals with disabilities. During these trying times our goal is to be a resource to help all members of our community find stability.

Black and white photo of Carly Pacheco, a white woman with long hair and glasses, wearing a scarf. She is facing the camera and smiling.
Carly Pacheco, Executive Director
Black and white photo of Kristin Ansell, a white woman with shoulder length blonde hair and glasses, a necklace and earrings. She is facing the camera and smiling.
Kristin Ansell, Board Chair

As we are reflecting on 2021, we are struck by the now too often used word, unprecedented.

The coronavirus pandemic continued having a significant impact on all our lives as new variants emerged. The introduction of vaccines and other therapeutics proved to be our most powerful defense against COVID-19. We advocated for prioritized access to the vaccine for individuals with disabilities and chronic health conditions, those living in congregate settings, and caregivers, and we hosted vaccine clinics at both of our offices.

We stepped up and supported our communities through multiple disasters. The Glen, Bennett and River fi res impacted many FREED consumers, and a significant winter storm took out power for two weeks in much of Yuba and Nevada Counties.

Organizationally, Ana Acton, our long-time Executive Director, was appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom as the Deputy Director of the Independent Living and Community Access Division at the CA Department of Rehabilitation. We could not be happier for Ana, and we are already benefi ting from her good work at the state. The FREED Board of Directors hired Carly, who was serving as Deputy Director, to step into the Executive Director role in July, and FREED has continued to thrive under Carly’s leadership.

We applied for and received funding to extend our Dine at Home Program, serving Yuba and Sutter Counties, for an additional two years. We worked with the Agency on Aging Area 4 and other partners to meet critical indicators and became a designated Aging and Disability Resource Connection in Yuba & Sutter Counties. and we are partnering with Connecting Point 211 in Nevada County to develop and implement a community data exchange.

Looking ahead to 2022, we are excited about CalAIM and the potential to partner with Managed Medi-Cal Plans to provide needed Community Supports and Enhanced Care Management. We are well-positioned to work with the counties we serve on the development of Master Plan for Aging (and Disability) Local Playbooks. And we are optimistic about the power of the ADRCs of Nevada and Yuba/Sutter Counties to continue expanding collaborative work in those counties.

Our staff are the backbone of all the important work we do. Their skill, dedication, and perseverance in navigating the systems makes FREED the powerful organization we are. Together we will continue moving forward to face whatever comes our way and rise up to meet the need.

Towards Independence and interdependence,

Carly Pacheco,
Executive Director

Kristin Ansell,
Board Chair

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