Sunflower Health Plan and Centene Foundation Announce 0,000 Grant to LADD Smart Living

Partnership to Facilitate Opportunities for Increased Independence for Kansans with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

LENEXA, Kan., Feb. 1, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Sunflower Health Plan (“Sunflower”),  a managed care organization established to deliver quality healthcare in the state of Kansas and a wholly owned subsidiary of the Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC), and Centene Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Centene Corporation, today announced a $390,000 grant to Living Arrangements for the Developmentally Disabled (“LADD”) to bring the Smart Living Model to Kansans with intellectual and developmental disabilities (“IDD”). LADD’s Smart Living Model uses technology and training to increase independence and promote high quality care.

The partnership with LADD will involve initial collaborative efforts with Johnson County Developmental Supports (“JCDS”) in Lenexa, KS, and Cottonwood, Inc., in Lawrence, KS, who will help coordinate and oversee the implementation through their residential services. The partnership aims to offer technology and support to give members with IDD more options for living in the most integrated setting possible, in a community of their choice.

“Sunflower believes that all people should be able to live where and how they want, and to choose how their services are provided,” said Michael Stephens, Sunflower Health Plan president and CEO. “The LADD team has tremendous compassion, expertise and respect for member choice and privacy. They have demonstrated success in empowering people with IDD to live safely, happily and more independently within their communities, while also increasing the satisfaction of their direct care professionals.”  

LADD’s Smart Living Model enables participants to safely have more control over how they live through intentional design, smart technology and an innovative staffing model. This allows agencies to support more members with IDD while maintaining high levels of direct-care worker employment and satisfaction.

“When LADD began designing Smart Living over four years ago, we wanted to create a model that other organizations could replicate in order to increase independence for individuals with developmental disabilities and address staffing issues affecting many support service providers across the country,” said Brian Hart, CEO of LADD’s Smart Living Initiative. “We are excited to partner with Sunflower Health Plan, the Centene Foundation, JCDS and Cottonwood to bring the Smart Living Model to Kansas to enrich the lives of individuals and assist local agencies in expanding their high-quality services to more people in their communities.”

“For more than 50 years, JCDS has supported people with IDD to achieve their goals of living and working in the community,” said Shelly May, JCDS deputy director. “We’re excited to partner with LADD and Sunflower Health Plan to bring new opportunities and resources to the people we support.”

About Sunflower Health Plan:
Sunflower Health Plan (“Sunflower”) is a managed care organization established to deliver quality healthcare in the state of Kansas through local, regional and community-based resources, and a wholly owned subsidiary of the Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC). Sunflower is committed to improving the health of its beneficiaries through focused, compassionate, and coordinated care in an approach based on the core belief that quality healthcare is best delivered locally. For more information, please visit

About the Centene Foundation:
The Centene Foundation (“the Foundation”), a private nonprofit focused on investing in economically challenged communities, is the philanthropic arm of Centene Corporation. The Foundation supports projects and initiatives strategically aligned with Centene’s mission-driven culture and enhances the work Centene is doing to remove the barriers to wellness underserved and low-income populations face. The Foundation is committed to addressing social determinants of health and improving health equity in three distinct areas of focus: healthcare access, social services and education. To learn more, visit the Centene Foundation’s website.

About LADD:
Guided by the belief that every person has ability and value, LADD empowers adults with developmental disabilities to live, work, and connect. Founded in 1975, the Cincinnati non-profit supports more than 700 individuals through housing, employment, smart technology, and meaningful community engagement programs. Learn more at

About Johnson County Developmental Supports:
Johnson County Developmental Supports is the agency of Johnson County government that facilitates career and personal development for Johnson County residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The agency regularly serves more than 500 people through a broad array of community-based programs and supports.

About Cottonwood Inc.
Cottonwood, Inc., provides supports and services to more than 600 people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Douglas and Jefferson counties. Cottonwood offers an array of services that are broad in scope, yet specific to individual needs, interests and desires. As a community service provider, Cottonwood’s mission is to help people with disabilities shape their own futures and reach their full potential as valued members of the community. 

SOURCE Sunflower Health Plan

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