one step beyond

Nonprofit of the Month: One Step Beyond

One Step Beyond, Inc. (OSBI) provides comprehensive programming and services for adults who have intellectual disabilities. The San Mateo-based organization empowers participants to achieve independence, self-sufficiency and employment through innovative programming and partnerships with local businesses that enable participants to contribute to and achieve greater social participation in their communities. 

While OSBI is fairly new to the Bay Area, its impact on families is not. Believing her daughter, Dylan, should have post-high school opportunities to contribute to the community and achieve her personal goals, Mimi Rogers—a former teacher—went into action.

“My mom started the program in 2003 with 16 participants in a small neighborhood location,” says OSBI CEO and Dylan’s sister, Madison Blanton. “Today, we are the largest provider of advanced education programs for adults who have intellectual and cognitive disabilities at our two locations in the Bay Area. And we have plans to expand to Half Moon Bay as part of The Big Wave Project next fall.” OSBI also has locations throughout the Phoenix area.

OSBI opened the San Mateo location in 2016, and when a flood of requests from the community asking for similar services rushed in, the organization brought is program and services to San Carlos in 2019.

OSBI provides one-of-a-kind life skills, employment, recreation and fitness programs. “We are the first and only community-based day training program that has a special needs hockey team, the One Step Sharks,” says Blanton.

Beyond this, the organization’s music students have the opportunity to interact with top experts in the field, performing in front of large crowds and recording with A-list producers, and there are culinary training programs planned as part of the Half Moon Bay expansion location.

“The recent pandemic and stay-at-home orders challenged us to provide services in a new way,” says Blanton. “We still have community-based services for individuals who require it, but the online classes have helped us maintain social engagement with many of our participants, including a guest speaker series that enables our participants to interact with local mayors, television producers, musicians, and other distinguished VIPs.”

OSBI staff have made it their life’s mission to better the lives of adults who have intellectual disabilities. Each day is about setting the standard and raising the bar for what post-secondary adaptive educational programming should be.

Community support and ongoing financial donations are an important part of the organization’s success. Individuals and businesses interested in supporting OSBI’s mission can make a monetary donation to the organization’s annual fundraising campaign by clicking here.

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