A progressive vision that truly respects all; a caring, committed staff; an ED who is smart, kind, enthusiastic and fiscally responsible; and participants who are valued and engaged. These elements make On-the-Move a model non-profit.
OTM is meeting a need that so many communities have. OTM serves adults with intellectual disabilities. Working with small groups OTM assists adults with accessing the community through intentional and meaningful ways. I have an adult child with an intellectual disability who joins OTM every week and has been there for 9 years. She still looks forward to everyday. I think OTM is the best thing that has ever happened to her. My daughter has a very strong connection and so much knowledge about our community because of OTM. I say THANK YOU On The Move for being the best!!!!!!
This group does exactly what they say they are going to do - integrating in the community. I am very proud to be associated with them. I would like them to be able to spread the word better about their mission throughout the community.
On the Move models community integration for all Portlanders and reaches beyond Portland into a wide network of friends, family and supporters. All who come in contact, stay with this beautiful organization as part of the On the Move community because its environment and attitude is irresistible.
As the sister of a man who was diagnosed with borderline mental retardation in our youth, I am keenly aware of how our society lacks modeling of true integration with people with developmental disabilities and opportunities to form genuine respectful relationships with them.
The beauty and work of On the Move and its active small groups' community activities' model is that staff and participants are out and about participating daily via public transportation in absolutely everything wonderful that Portland has to offer and in the best spirit of Portland - free & cheap public events, museums, parks, cultural activities, volunteer activities, tours; they are all over the place! Everywhere they go they interact fully with those lucky enough to cross their path. OTM staff and participants model how joyful & mutually respectful community integration and relationships work and I truly believe that all who come in contact learn by example and follow suit.
As a Portlander, I am so grateful to have On the Move here and, as a family member of an adult with developmental disabilities, I wish the On the Move model was everywhere helping people learn how to not just passively include but fully and joyfully integrate the ADD individuals living among us into our communities in an environment of safety and respect. We'd all be better for it if we could clone On the Move and its model was as common as the Starbucks in every neighborhood.
I've had the opportunity to work for this organization for over three years and long after leaving, I still maintain contact with them because I've never met a more positive group of people.
I have lived in Portland over 10 years and I've never found an organization quite like On-the-Move Community Integration. It is a relief to finally find a place that has an outlook about integration of people with disabilities of any kind as a important part of our community with gifts to give and receive by taking part of everyday activities everywhere - no limitations. I grew up in Maine in a family with a brother with developmental disabilities who gave equally to my world as much or more than he received from it. I worked for years in agencies that provided housing and activity programs for folks like my brother. I was fortunate to work under directors with very progressive and inclusive visions. Then I moved to Portland, Oregon and I worked in the bike industry and I found myself surrounded by a strange cross-section of community that didn't feel complete for me though I loved the bike world. It didn't feel real to me. It didn't feel complete.
My world is not complete when I don't see people with disabilities daily - it starts to feel segregated and odd. When I finally connected with On-the-Move Community Integration to volunteer as a reading tutor, I was so relieved to finally get a sense of the community around me being a real and complete community. I notice this acutely because this is something I was aware of from my birth; however, I think about people who don't realize what is missing in their world. When we don't see people with Down's Syndrome, with mental retardation, with whatever disability, we don't realize that it makes our own world smaller and along with that, the possibilities less. I love to know that I might come across someone I know from On-the-Move volunteering anywhere - planting trees, making waffles, packing food boxes at the Food Bank. Or I might come across a group of folks on a hike, at the zoo, at a concert, or at a sporting event.
On-the-Move is aptly named as the idea is that integration is fluid and entails integrating - being a part of what is going on all around us. I know that I get ideas for activities that would be fun to do by seeing what On-the-Move is up to in Facebook photos, I think I may very well not be unique in that. On-the-Move is a trendsetting, forward-thinking organization and it's fortunate for Portland that we have this organization in our midst. I am grateful and appreciate being involved in this organization.
On-The-Move provides absolutely unique, ground-breaking opportunities for adults disabilities. Their recipe is actually quite simple: get folks out in the community where they can volunteer and have fun! By volunteering in environmentally conscious and socially just activities, On-The-Move participants gain social skills and a source of real pride at making a worthwhile contribution to their community. But just as important, if not more so, the community comes to know and really appreciate a group of joyful souls that they may have overlooked. Diversity increases with every smile. Every time I visit On-The-Move, I think to myself, "Shouldn' t I be having this much fun?" Wow.
I've been a Board Member of On-the-Move for a couple of years after learning about this program in 2010. I was blown away by the unique mission of On-the-Move to integrate those with special needs within the community of Portland with a focus on ecology or environmental awareness. I appreciate that the staff here at On-the-Move is dedicated to the mission and to the participants in every way, helping with communication, creating a great close knit community and fostering talent and creativity with all the participants. 2012 has certainly been a successful year for On-the-Move gaining great visibility in Portland with the state. Kudos to Executive Director Molly Mayo and her team at On-the-Move Community Integration!