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New partnership to aid developmentally disabled in Mo.

By Marshall Griffin, St. Louis Public Radio

Jefferson City, Mo. – A new partnership funded by county, state and federal money will allow Missourians with developmental disabilities to receive services while living at home.

The program will enable around 470 people to live at home with their families while receiving such services as speech, behavioral and physical therapy and personal assistance. Roger Garlich is with the Missouri Department of Mental Health.

"People can remain in their homes as long as possible," Garlich said. "If they have aging caregivers, for example, it'll bring some support to those caregivers...it'll help get people jobs that might not otherwise be able to have that assistance to get a job."

Thirty-seven counties and the city of St. Louis are taking part in the program. Each developmentally disabled client will receive up to $12,000 a year in assistance.

"(The program) has services in it like dental services, employment related services, temporary residential for relief of caregivers, behavior management training, and a number of others, there are about 18 services in it," Garlich said.

Garlich hopes more Missouri counties will participate in the future. Those taking part contributed a total of $1.5 million, which was matched by the state in order to draw down around $5.2 million from Washington.

The program will begin enrolling developmentally disabled clients on Friday, October 1st.