For the first time, a Lincoln County resident has won the annual Missouri Development Disabilities Council (MODDC) poster contest; that artwork will now be used to spearhead the MODDC’s efforts throughout March and Development Disabilities Awareness month.
The winner, Lera Poignee, a twenty-year-old Troy resident, said she wanted to convey several important messages through the poster.
“Anyone that has disabilities can graduate, we can all learn how to cook, we go to work and then anyone can do anything in the world,” Poignee said.
Poignee graduated from Troy Buchanan in 2019, which she said was a rewarding experience, and currently works at the Asbury United Methodist Preschool.
“I help the children out, so if they need help opening their drinks or they can’t find a toy, or if they need to go to the bathroom I’ll walk them to the bathroom,” Poignee said, adding that the job can have its tough days “especially if you have kids chucking toys at you,” but said the work is rewarding.
As far as “doing anything in the world,” Poignee said her big goal is to be able to get a driver’s license.
“Right now my dream is, I want to drive one of these days,” Poignee said. “All the other teachers at work, they all drive except me, so I have to wait for my ride to show up.”
Having her poster chosen is exciting, Poignee said, and to make the deal sweeter, there’s a $500 prize that goes along with it. Poignee is a bit of a gamer, and plans to buy an Xbox One S with the money. She plans to enter the contest next year too, and said she enjoyed the process of creating the poster “because I love doing art.”
“This poster is published across the state for March being Development Disabilities Awareness month,” said Community Opportunities Executive Director Mary Sullivan-Thomas, adding that Poignee’s poster will be sent throughout the state and published across tons of websites advocating for those with developmental disabilities throughout the month.
“She [Poignee] gets to share her advocacy efforts throughout the state,” Sullivan-Thomas said.