29 Nov Teaching Independence

As an adult, it can be easy to take for granted the skills necessary to succeed in daily life. Often times, we go about our day giving very little thought to who has the right of way in traffic, how to compose a professional email, or how to choose a wardrobe that coincides with our career. Many of the teens placed at the YOC have not had the opportunity to learn the skills needed as they develop into young adults.

The dedicated members of our Independent Living Department work diligently to design a curriculum that allows our residents to thrive, not just survive. Nearly 80% of all 14-18 year-old residents at the YOC are currently engaged in IL experiences and support. IL staff members partner with others from various departments of the organization to ensure that each resident receives personalized services and support.

IL Coordinator, Sonya Willis and the IL Educators, Shandell Vickery and Brooke Herbert share a love for watching each resident succeed and knowing that they played a part in their success. Independent Living skills are taught and modeled by YOC staff members, community leaders visiting campus, and at various locations in the surrounding community.

Residents sixteen years and older complete the Casey Life Skills Assessment; a tool that provides feedback about what skills each young adult should begin focusing on. The IL team builds a plan that complements their treatment and meets them where they are. Residents may begin by learning skills pertaining to self-care, organization, maintaining a home environment, living a healthy lifestyle, and planning and preparing nutritious meals. As they progress in the program, skills such as how to manage finances, career preparation, and important tools for finding safe and affordable housing are taught by the YOC staff and community members.

We also understand that education is a powerful tool that unlocks possibilities so residents attend classes and pursue their high school diploma or HSE while at the YOC. We provide support for SAT registration and preparation, 21st Century Scholar application, FAFSA applications, and college visits. Financial scholarships are available to residents through the Anna Ullom Scholarship Fund, a scholarship that provides financial assistance to YOC residents who qualify.

We understand that as placing agents, you are passionate about your kids getting the help they need. Join us for a tour to learn how the Independent Living Program helps us provide exceptional care that doesn’t just meet expectations but far exceeds them.


This story is from the December 2018 Placing Agent Newsletter.