Sarah Mruz, a direct support professional for Mains’l Services, Inc. in Brooklyn Park, was one of eight individuals and organization across Minnesota recognized for their work in improving and enriching the lives of seniors and people with disabilities at the 2013 Age and Disabilities Odyssey Conference June 17-18 in Duluth.
Mruz, who has been supporting people in the Coon Rapids area for almost 25 years, received the award for her model treatment of consumers.
“The 2013 Odyssey award winners are excellent examples of individuals and organizations coming together to better serve aging Minnesotans, people with disabilities and their caregivers,” said Minnesota Human Services Commissioner Lucinda Jesson.
“It is wonderful to see the difference these people and organizations are making in their communities.”
Three awards were given in the service category, which recognizes an organization or individual that has promoted exemplary practices, services and/or advocacy for older Minnesotans, people with disabilities and their communities.
According to her nomination, Mruz “maintains the utmost respect for the dignity and rights of the consumers, all the while addressing their needs.”
She allows her consumers to make independent decisions, no matter the outcome, and is at the ready to solve any problems that may occur, the nomination states.
Mruz said that receiving the Odyssey award is “quite an honor.”
She was flattered to have been selected among the many nominations that were submitted, according to Mruz.
On behalf of direct support professionals throughout the state, she feels that receiving this award and recognition is humbling and it demonstrates appreciation from both the individuals she supports and her employer, Mruz said.
“Sarah represents the important contributions of direct support professionals throughout Minnesota,” said Teresa Williams, chief executive officer of Mains’l Services.
“We are so proud of her and the compassion she offers the people she supports. She is truly making a difference, one person at a time.”