Random ways to show appreciation for Direct Support Professionals

Everyday is acknowledgement day!



Recently, we celebrated the Direct Support Professional’s Week, September 13 – 19, 2020. There were a lot of fun activities, prizes and surprises for our modern-day heroes – our direct support professionals as a way to give back to them for the hard work and dedication they provide for people with disabilities. It was a great opportunity to highlight the dedicated, innovative direct support workforce that is the heart and soul of support for people with disabilities.


We believe the special recognition needs to continue. Here at 1st Choice Family Services, we make sure we always give appreciation to our DSPs in the field by offering tokens of gratitude to make them know how important they are. This includes various gift certificate awards, recognition within our social platform and some awesome giveaways for a job well done.


Appreciating the hard work of our direct support professionals motivates them every day. With this acknowledgment, they exceed our expectations in the support field and their quality of work is constantly improving. They stay and grow in the company. This growth shows the effectiveness of the training combined with hands-on experience in the field.


Showing appreciation can go a long way in boosting employee morale and retention. The reason why our direct support professionals are at the top of their field is because we treat them like family. We make them feel valued and encourage them to be at their best because there are many opportunities for career growth within the 1st Choice Family Services direct support workforce. There are simple ways to show appreciation for our direct support professionals too. These are:


  • Saying “thank you” for a job well done


A simple word of appreciation to let them know that we acknowledge their passion and integrity for supporting people with disabilities.


  • Writing a personal note of appreciation


Writing some notes to show appreciation for our direct support professionals is one way of recognizing their efforts and patience in this field. Writing personal notes that are made especially for them will make them feel that their company sees their good work and praises them for it.


  • Preparing simple tokens of gratitude such as gift cards or free lunch for outstanding DSPs of the week


Doing this kind of preparation even in the simplest form will make our direct support professionals be more inspired to maintain their outstanding skills and performance.


  • Giving awards to the top direct support professional of the week


A certificate of recognition for the top direct support professional of the week or a simple token of thanks to our modern superheroes is a positive action. Giving DSPs importance will attract positive feed-back from our DSPs. It is a great way to show staff that you notice the difference they make and the little things that make them unique.



The importance of acknowledging our Direct Support Professionals



When you hear that someone has been here for five years, that they’ve been doing this job for that long, it makes us appreciate the folks that stick around. Within five years, the amount of growth and knowledge that they acquired from working as a direct support professional will be passed on to our newly hired direct support employees. With this level of knowledge, the quality of the direct support professional is high. It’s a tough job, and to be tenacious and love the job is pretty amazing.


Praise and recognition is the most powerful act a leader can offer their team. When delivered well, it will give people the drive and motivation to continue producing the caliber of work you want to see and result in exceeding expectations. Since direct support professionals are often unrecognized compared to other health care workers in the field, it is our job to make them feel that they are not inferior to others.


Direct support professionals are a lifeline for individuals with disabilities, and they deserve the utmost respect and recognition for their commitment to supporting independence and a self-directed life for the people they serve. Even without recognition, what matters to our direct support professionals is the welfare of the people they are taking care of. The lives of many people with disabilities depends on them, and clients can spend more time with our direct support professionals on a daily basis compared to their own family.


Empowering our direct support professionals leads to higher employee morale, better retention, and most importantly, better services for the people they support. Giving recognition to our staff is our culture, and it is an expectation. A lack of understanding and appreciation for the important work of direct support professionals is often highlighted as a hindrance to the advancement of the workforce. Their hard work, skills, and dedication should be acknowledged. It will be a source of drive for most of them if they feel they are being valued as a person and as a direct support professional.


We treat DSPs as family members, and as a result of a positive work environment they give  affection back to their clients, who also see them as a family member. A positive attitude causes a chain reaction of positive thoughts, events and outcomes. If you are interested in learning about the great opportunities you can attain in career growth by being a direct support professional, you will want to read our blogs for daily updates about the amazing skills showcased by our DSPs.