Empowering individuals supported to live, work and participate fully in their communities
To release the potential of individuals supported to live the life they love
Person Centered * Collaboration Empowerment * Innovation * Leadership
To create opportunities that afford individuals supported to live, work and participate fully in their communities
Diversified Enterprises has held a unique and respected position in the Tift County community since 1969. Diversified Enterprises was founded in 1969 as the Tift County Training Center for the Mentally Retarded by the Tifton Junior Citizens Club (Jaycees) who sought to provide day care services for the parents of children born with developmental disabilities and intellectual disabilities (formally known as mental retardation). Banding together, The Jaycees funded the organization until 1972 when funding was assumed by the State of Georgia. With the passage of public law 94-142 The Education for All Handicapped Children Act in 1975, the center provided early intervention to babies and toddlers while adults attended the sheltered workshop. School age children with developmental disabilities began to attend school. In 1979 the center added work crews performing lawn maintenance, janitorial and other contract work paid at sub-minimum wages.
The agency assumed the name Diversified Enterprises in 1983. Diversified Enterprises operated as a workshop and day care center until 1986 when the director enlisted the support of the community, parents and family members, staff and persons supported in the decision to close the workshop and become a non-facility based program. As a result, in 1986, Diversified Enterprises closed its sheltered workshop and began to assist people with developmental disabilities by helping them develop vocational skills and gain employment in our community by providing supports for the persons in the community or in their work environment. Diversified Enterprises became the first agency in South Georgia to operate a program supporting individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities that was completely community-based. Diversified’s focus became to help individuals with developmental disabilities develop natural supports in our community and part of a meaningful life with integrated employment as the desired outcome.
The passage of Georgia House Bill 100 in 1993 offered the opportunity to become a true community-based and community-operated agency. The Tift County Board of Health agreed to assume a leadership role in the operation of the agency, and on July 1, 1994 began the official governance of its services.
In November of 1996, under the Board of Health’s direction, the agency began providing residential services for 9 consumes in three homes and in 2001 Diversified began offering host homes as a residential option (and the first services provided outside Tift County). Previously, the agency only provided day services. Since that date, Diversified Enterprises has expanded its services to support over 30 individuals in a variety of residential options. Under the Tift County Board of Health’s leadership, the programs continued to grow.
2011 was an exciting year, the Agency moved from providing group employment services and began to focus on individual supported employment only. That year Diversified also began the transition to electronic Health records and nursing services grew-as a result the agency was able to support more medically fragile individuals. In 2014, the agency added behavioral supports to its array of services, the only provider in the region and second in Georgia. Diversified began to accept for individuals that were transitioning from State Institutions.
In 2017, the agency realized as a state entity they could not apply for grants and other opportunities for funds that could assist persons supported and enhance services that were not covered by existing funding sources. In September 2017, a separate Board of Directors was created and Diversified Enterprises of South Georgia was created as a 501c3.
Today, The Agency maintains its Employment 1st philosophy and supports over 110 individuals over 60 of which are in employment. Diversified Enterprises is proud of its diverse community base services and comprehensive array of residential supports that help people live independently, have meaningful employment and be a part of their community.
We celebrated our 50th anniversary in 2019! We cannot wait to see where the future takes us!