Day Program Expands Its Hours
Since day one the Day Program has operated from 9 am to 3 pm Monday through Friday.
Now the program will be available starting at 8 am and run until 4pm for everyone in the program. Evening and weekend services will also be offered to people that attend Day Program and reside in their natural homes.
“We wanted to expand our services to people living in their natural homes in order to help them have a more well-rounded social life and have the opportunity to participate in activities they might otherwise not be able to participate in,” says Day Program Manager Michelle Bell.
Day Program Director Craig Valone adds, “The Day Program is looking for ways to meet the needs of the individual as well as the needs of the family. Extending Day Program hours allows for additional programming and flexibility for individuals to incorporate our program into their overall meaningful day.”
Currently they are using word of mouth and phone calls to spread the word about the activities. The plan for the future is to create a three-month calendar of community activities posted on the ACT website. Everyone will have access to sign up.
The group sizes are small (7-8 people supported) for now. They hope to increase this to 15-20, or more, per outing, depending on the response from people served and staff recruitment.
So far, they have gone to the Night to Shine Tim Tebow prom and an ARC dance. A Light It Up Blue event, Earth Day celebration, Easter party, and Wii Night at Services for Independent Living are coming soon.
The new service has already made a positive impact on people in the program.
“Individuals we support got the opportunity to do things they have never been able to do! Family members are very happy, too. One mother had a chance to go out for a few hours and enjoy some alone time, something she rarely gets to do,” Bell says.
And it doesn’t hurt that they are having fun.
“The ARC dance was fun and the prom was fantastic!” Bell continues.
The service allows for transportation as well. Individuals don’t have to worry about getting to and from the activity. All they need to do is sign up.
Bell says, “We are very excited to offer this service. We feel like it will make a real difference in peoples’ lives.”