Bethesda Lutheran Communities
Bethesda Lutheran Communities is a non-profit human service organization serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities through faith-based programs.
Bethesda provides homes and other services for more than 1,500 people with intellectual and developmental disabilities across 13 states. This includes residential living services, host homes/family living programs, day programs, spiritual support services, vocational training and thrift shops. All programs and services are delivered with attention to quality and innovation. Bethesda's direct support professionals have been recognized nationally by ancor for their high-quality support. Bethesda is growing its host home support services, which match an individual, couple or family with a person who has a disability. Today there are more than 80 people supported in a host home environment in six states. Bethesda provides employment support to more than 120 people working within more than 50 businesses. Employment support takes many forms, including coaching by bethesda staff, as well as community partnerships. In wisconsin, bethesda partners with a local hospital and school system on a project know as project search to provide hands-on job skills. In partnership with concordia university wisconsin, bethesda offers a two-year program, bethesda college, which offers life, employment and learning skills. Bethesda has engaged more than 500 congregations to offer worship, bible studies and inclusion for people with disabilities. Bethesda further provides devotional resources, disability awareness materials, and adaptive communication pieces to individuals and congregations in 34 states. A new ambassador program, involving outreach by contracted college students, deaconesses and retired pastors, is opening new opportunities for bethesda within congregations. Bethesda relies on an active corps of more than 10,000 volunteers, including bethesda auxiliary, to extend its reach. Bethesda operates 16 thrift shops in seven states that generate revenue to help support people with disabilities. The stores, staffed by employees and volunteers, provide affordable shopping options to families in communities we serve and employment opportunities for people of all abilities.