Aacres, LLC has a simple philosophy: We say ‘Yes’. That’s according to Embassy Management LLC regional director Mark Beagley.
Since purchasing Aacres in 2014, Embassy has established an accommodating environment focused on meeting client needs.
“We’ve got an organization that really supports us,” Beagley said of Embassy.
That’s important because Aacres has a goal to serve “every individual that comes to us.”
“We don’t typically say no to referrals,” Beagley said.
Founded in Lakewood in 1974, Aacres provides community support for people with developmental disabilities.
Its focus is to connect clients with residential services with the intent to give them as much power, choice and independence as possible.
“It’s as close to the lifestyle you and I are living as possible,” Beagley said from Aacres office suite at 8815 South Tacoma Way in Lakewood.
Clients range from high-functioning with minimal need for assistance to those who need care 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
How it works:
Clients are referred to Aacres through the state Department of Social and Human Services. Aacres staff reviews the packet and meet with potential clients.
“We want to determine if we can meet their needs and they decide if we’re the right fit for them,” Beagley said.
If both sides agree, the client is prepared for move in. If a home isn’t available, Aacres house hunts and will even assist with buying furniture and other necessities if needed.
Often two to three people will be housed together, after it’s determined they are compatible roommates.
The company has 131 clients statewide. Most are in the South Sound region living in 67 homes that span between Tacoma and Lakewood.
Each client has a support team rallying around them. That includes a supervisor and case manager and coordinator who oversee behavioral and medical needs.
There’s also housing staff which fill multiple shifts to make sure someone is always present in the homes.
In some cases Aacres staff is the only one advocating for the clients, while for others family members are involved but unable to be there full time.
Without Aacres and its services the alternative would be dismal, Beagley said.
Instead of living in single family houses and apartments where they have independence, people could be in mental institutions or homeless on the streets, he said.
“They’d be struggling,” Beagley said.
Aacres relies on community partners like Pierce Transit to help transport people to and from appointments and work, and connects with other agencies to provide vocational training and jobs.
Aacres employs 560 people, making it one of Lakewood’s largest employers.
Because of its position as a top employer in Lakewood, its longevity in the community and its enthusiasm for the city, the city of Lakewood recognizes Aacres LLC as its March 2017 Business Showcase.