By Tara Kiene
Debra Ewing was recently named the Outstanding Service Coordinator 2021 by the Colorado Interagency Coordinating Council (CICC).
This award is given to one early intervention service coordinator in Colorado each year.
Colorado’s Early Intervention (EI) program provides supports and services to children with developmental delays or disabilities and their families from birth until the child’s third birthday. Early Intervention Colorado helps families learn ways to support and promote their child’s development within their everyday routines and activities.
A service coordinator works with families throughout their child’s involvement with the EI Colorado program, assists them in accessing services and ensures they know their legal rights. Based upon the priorities identified by the family, a service coordinator connects them with early intervention professionals who can help them support their child’s development and learn and grow with their peers. They also help families locate and access community resources and programs to meet the needs of the child and the entire family.
Ewing has worked at Community Connections for more than 20 years as an early intervention service coordinator and early childhood specialist in her home community of Pagosa Springs. She was nominated for this award by Pat Smith, retired director of Children and Family Services at Community Connections, who shares: “Her families are her first priority and she is constantly striving to get the best services, equipment and resources that are available to them-not by doing it for them, but by guiding them through the process so they can fly on their own once they leave the Early Intervention fold. Her positivity is evident and affects those around her. She is an amazing individual!”
According to the CICC: “This year’s group of nominees made it incredibly difficult for the nominating committee to decide upon the winners. The CICC wishes to acknowledge how Ewing has gone above and beyond her regular duties to shine as an exemplary model of how service coordinators can positively impact both the families they serve and the colleagues and communities they work with — and within — on a daily basis.”
Community Connections is a local nonprofit serving southwest Colorado with case management and programs for children and adults with a variety of disabilities. See more at www.communityconnectionsco.org.