Wispact Foundation Grant Spotlight: Opportunity Development Centers, Inc. (ODC), Wisconsin Rapids

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Interview with Ann Lepak, Director of PR/Fund Development

ODC Grant

Jennifer (right) was excited to show off her work to Eric Degroot, Wispact Foundation (left) at the Exploring the Arts exhibit.

Opportunity Development Centers, Inc. (ODC) is a nonprofit organization that empowers people with disabilities to achieve their work and life goals. Programs and services are provided throughout 13 counties in central and northeastern Wisconsin. In 2022, ODC served over a thousand people, and they intend to continue their positive growth this year and beyond.

Ann Lepak, Director of PR/Fund Development explained that “Our goal is to connect individuals with the communities where they live and help them participate in all the positive things their communities have to offer.”

Lepak stated that because of their Wispact Foundation Grant, “We can offer program enhancements that create higher quality programs.” A person with disabilities may not always have the financial means to experience what their community has to offer, such as local events or classes. Lepak addresses this, saying “The funding that we’ve received has allowed us to offer those opportunities for people and pay for those classes or admittance fees.”

The Exploring the Arts Program is a shining example of the positive work ODC is doing with the assistance of the Wispact Foundation. “Exploring the Arts allowed us to connect people to all different types of art forms,” said, Lepak. “Nearly 200 people had the opportunity to participate and broaden their experiences, as well as develop new interests and new friendships. We developed different partnerships related to the arts through this grant allowing people to explore and engage in their communities.”

The Exploring the Arts Program concluded with an art exhibit displaying participants’ works. Lepak spoke of event, saying, “It was a unique opportunity for people to not only participate, but then show off their work. They all were very proud and really excited about this opportunity.”

When asked about working with the Wispact Foundation, Lepak said, “It was seamless and very easy to apply. It’s really geared toward the people we support and helps us enhance their lives.”

For people interested in supporting ODC, Lepak offered, “It could be through a monetary donation or through volunteering. If they have a skill or a talent that they would like to share they can reach out to us, we’d love to give people the exposure to as many things as possible.” For more information on Opportunity Development Centers, Inc., please visit www.odcinc.com dor like and follow them on Facebook at ODC, Inc.