Institute on Disabilities at Temple University

Programs > Policy > Person Directed Services

Person Directed Services: Stories

You direct your own services. Or you support someone who directs their services. Person directed services changed your life and you shared your stories.

Person Directed Services, or PDS, are home and community-based services that can help people of all ages, and all disabilities maintain independence and choose the supports they need to live their best life.

In April 2020, the Institute and its partners reached out to people with disabilities and those who support them across Pennsylvania to share personal stories about how self-direction has improved their life.

On this page, it is ok to be you. It is ok to be different, and to tell your story in your own way. Everyone's chosen story-telling method is respected, while making the stories as accessible as we can. Please embrace the differences and enjoy the stories.

Want to share your story? Learn how.

Holly's Story

"The Services My Way waiver has really increased my independence..."

photo of Holly's face

Colton's Story

"I am the first student with intellectual disabilities to live on campus..."

photo of Colton's face

Tanya's Story

"What we really need is a cultural shift and mind change..."

photo of Tanya's face

Shirley's Story

"...allows me to have a productive career and a vibrant social life."

photo of Shirley's face

Jordan's Story

"...[my family and] I can choose the person working with [me]..."

This project is supported by a grant from the Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council; in part by grant 1901PASCDD-02, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects with government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official ACL policy.


Some of the stories shared here may contain music, video or images to which the story-teller does not own the rights. The story-teller chose the music, video or images as a way to educate others about their PDS experience. Where copyrighted material is used, we provide a music, video or photo credit for the fair use of the material.

Institute on Disabilities at Temple University, College of Education and Human Development
University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service