Housing Programs For Disabled Adults - Group homes are community homes where a disability service provider owns and controls a home, as well as co-ordinating support for those living in the home. (Learn more about this and other models by viewing the Autism Housing Network's Virtual Tour of Housing Options) There is a bit of a stigma around group homes, but we have met and heard from group home residents who love where they are. Life and the support they can count on. On. What has become clear is that the quality of the service provider, the training of its staff and its commitment to residents are largely determinants of the quality of the particular group home provider. Life Services Alternatives (LSA) is known in California as an exceptional provider of group homes (residential housing for adults). As a parent leader who has championed and opened a dozen group homes, LSA Executive Director Donna Hooper spoke with us about what group homes can offer and what to look for in a service provider. Watch the video below to learn more about Hooper's work, and read on for our conversation.
A: Group homes (also known as adult residential facilities) are homes for 4-6 adults with developmental disabilities. In California, these homes are licensed by the Department of Social Services and sold through one of 21 regional centers. Homes are divided into several categories and offer different levels of care and support that reflect the different needs of residents, such as the amount of assistance needed with daily living, travel, medical conditions and keeping them safe and healthy.
Housing Programs For Disabled Adults
Q: What types of support needs, family circumstances or personalities are best served in a group home?
Disabled Adults & Seniors
A: Some types of needs (such as 24-hour nursing care) are best served in a group home. No family circumstance or personality is better served.
A: The opportunity to develop relationships with roommates and work together to learn to be more independent. Living in a group home can provide opportunities for socialization and a chance to work with others to develop these skills. This can be difficult to find when you live alone or in a smaller group. We have discovered that when people with different abilities live together, they complement and learn from each other.
Q: What should be considered when choosing to live in a group home instead of owning an apartment or an adult foster care arrangement?
A: Consider what environment the individual prefers to live in and look closely at the specific providers and programs offered to see what is most beneficial to the individual. This is where knowing the individual's needs and preferences and personality is so important. Everyone is different. I would suggest seeing the program in action and getting to know people and staff members before making your choice.
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A: First, quality can vary in any industry. There is a natural tendency to assume that all providers are bad just because some have received negative press. In California, providers can be either "for-profit" or "non-profit" organizations. The state sets the rates for residential services, and it is the same for all providers. Unfortunately, the state has a history of freezing rates and/or not keeping up with the costs of doing business. This puts enormous pressure on suppliers to keep costs low in order to survive. Suppliers have to find ways to maintain quality. This could include raising outside cash, better cost control or efficiencies.
A: Visit the houses to see how well they are maintained, as this is a good indication of how well funded and managed the organization is. Talk to the staff and ask questions to learn how they run their program and how they work. (See the questions below that may be helpful in determining the quality of staff and programs and in determining the right fit for you and your family.)
A: Yes, absolutely. The fee structure should be reviewed and fees aligned with results/performance. Higher quality programs and/or programs located in higher cost of living areas should have higher fees. Supervision today is geared towards detecting/correcting deficiencies and does not address quality.
Donna Hooper has served as LSA's executive director since 2007 and is an advocate for more senior residential housing. During his tenure, he successfully opened 8 homes in Santa Clara County. As a former San Andreas Regional Center board member and parent of a developmentally disabled son in supported living, Donna understands the full spectrum of housing options in the local community.
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Desiree is the Project Manager for the Autism Housing Network. Her work for the Madison House Autism Foundation focuses on researching housing issues, advocating for autism issues in adulthood, and presenting her work at local and national meetings. She visits residential communities and social enterprises across the United States and highlights her unique victories and learning curves as she shares stories of people on the spectrum or who have other developmental disabilities. Her passion is to empower autistic adults and parents to create an exciting and life-affirming future by offering small group consultation to shape projects. First Place is a unique housing model for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Residents are supported with daily living skills, money management, transport and health and wellbeing Credit: Courtesy of First Place AZ
"I didn't see this coming," says Candy, now 58 and moderately intellectually disabled.
"Her little sister was about to graduate high school and go to college, and Candy pulled me aside one day and said, 'I'm the oldest.' Why does it go first?
That was in the early 1980s, says Pottenger, who was living in Wichita, Kan., at the time. The world was different then: less compassionate to people with disabilities, and with fewer home- and community-based programs and services available to help launch a person with an intellectual/developmental disability (I/DD) into the larger community.
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"It became clear pretty quickly that keeping Candy at home would be easier and less expensive, but she deserved the life she wanted."
At that time, it was often assumed that parents would survive their captured children; Meanwhile, the adult child stayed at home with mom and dad.
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The passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990 was key to empowering people with I/DD and their advocates, creating better access to early intervention and educational support and helping them join their local communities in independent living situations.
And thanks to advocacy organizations, parents can learn how to help their adult children find their place in the world; to discuss his own mortality; And to provide for their children financially after they are gone.
"There wasn't a lot of support or a lot of programs to help parents sort things out," recalls Pottenger, who lives in Sun City, Ariz., these days. "But then I stood up for my daughter for a while and I realized it."
Candy wanted to go to college and get a job and be a part of the world, and Pottenger was determined to provide it.
Hampton Roads Disabilities Board (hrdb)
"It's getting better. But it's still not easy to find community inclusion and permanent homes for people with I/DD."
"I had to figure out not only how to provide that, but make sure it would continue after I was gone. It became very clear that keeping Kandi at home would be easier and less expensive, but she deserved the life that She wants as much as anyone else. Can have."
Instead of a traditional college, Pottenger had Candy attend a vocational school, where she learned how and what to support herself financially. After that, in an era when independent living options were limited for the I/DD community, Candy lived in a series of group homes.
"It was exhausting and hard, and ultimately worth it," says Pottenger. Today, her daughter works in a local supermarket and lives in the city near her mother. Yet 40 years later, many of the challenges Pottenger faced in getting Kandy settled are still there.
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"It's getting better," according to Jon Meyers, the former executive director of the Arc of Arizona. The Arc is the nation's oldest and largest I/DD advocacy organization with more than 600 chapters across the United States. "But finding community inclusion and permanent homes for people with I/DD is still not easy."
The norm was that a child with I/DD would go live with another family member once their parents died, Meyers says.
"But this option comes up more rarely today because people tend to move more often and don't live in the same city.
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