Coming of age, and beyond
Late teens and young adulthood is a time of growth, new experiences, risk, and increasing responsibilities. It is a time of “coming of age,” and of becoming a part of the greater community. All people, including those with disabilities, go through major life changes during this period.
They’re graduating from high school, maybe continuing with school, maybe heading out into the workforce or moving into their own place.
With the right support and appropriate outlets for their feelings and emotions they will enter adulthood feeling empowered and ready for their new independence.
There are many concrete skills we can work on to help with their entrance into adulthood. Life skills such as learning the local transportation options, work readiness, and so much more.
But that’s only half of the picture. Young adults need to understand their changing bodies and their changing world. They may need help learning how to make and keep friends, and how to navigate the world of dating.
We recognize this need and have developed a thorough, innovative curriculum to give young adults the tools they need to become strong, confident, independent members of their community.
Our classes are designed to teach teens and young adults the building blocks of becoming an independent adult, including social skills, friendship, boundaries, safety, dating, sexuality, and so much more.
This fall we are starting with six classes, but our hope is to expand to meet the needs and demands of our students. In the winter we are planning to introduce a class focusing on sexuality and dating issues, along with a Transistions II class that focuses on more adult-related subjects.
But we have more than just classes! In Fall 2011 we are opening our Cafe, a work, performance, educational, and social space for teens and adults. The cafe will be the hub of all adult activities and we hope it develops into an integral part of our community’s experience.
Special events, including movie nights and dances, give students a chance to practice their social skills and build bonds with others in the programs and in the community.