National Technical Assistance Center for Independent Living
The growing role of Centers with Youth
All of our on-site training, with the IL-Net team, is amazing. As we get set for the new school year, I want to show you some of the ideas from one on youth. I was totally impressed at the energy and fun of the presenters — some youth, some who “grew up” in the Youth Leadership Forum, and some who are providing dynamic outreach with and for youth. You can find the the captioned video and PowerPoint presentations and other materials on our website. But to give you just a small taste, here are some program examples from Seth Hoderewski and Joe Michener from Lehigh Valley CIL(Allentown, PA). These are just a few slides from the excellent video available. Whether your center is large or small, you will find ideas for funding youth programs that will work for you.
Most (or all) of LVCIL’s young-adult population uses Core Services – IL skills (group and individual), peer support group, social clubs (e.g. CommUnity Club), etc.
• LVCIL’s addition of transition-focused programming for young adults started from inquiries (I&R) from parents and young adults seeking services.
• Core Services are integrated and integral to all supplemental services.
• For the School 2 Life portion of the program, young adults meet one to two times a month to participate in various activities, at LVCIL or in the community, to develop independent living and other skills.
• For the Real World program, young adults attend programming three days a week for six weeks to work more intensively on transition -related skills.
• One -on-one case management and support for parents is also provided.
• The need for more services (done in the “CIL” way) for young adults in our area, motivated LVCIL and Voc Rehab to partner and create the Career Path program.
• Initial funding through an Innovation and Expansion grant from Voc Rehab to start the program in 2011.
• In the first year, LVCIL worked with 50 young adults (ages 18 -25, who are out of school) to provide supported employment services, including a
unique element called Skills Training (eight -week intensive program to develop work- essential skills).
• Success, Engagement, Education and Determination (SEED) is a program for 20 college students (any age) to receive support for IL and vocational skills on campus at a local community college.
• Partnered with the Lehigh Carbon Community College (LCCC), and supported initially (2014) by a grant from the PA Developmental Disabilities
Council (DDC), but now moving to fee-for-service.
• Through WIOA funding, LVCIL has partnered with Voc Rehab (fee -for -service) this past year to provide pre-employment services to students (ages 16-21, in school):
• Group presentations to students at their schools.
Development of and support on paid work experiences.
Development of and support on job shadowing experiences.
As you can see, this center is one of several represented in the training that have an active, vital youth program before discussing transition — so transition comes naturally as they leave secondary school.