As a child grows up, families go through the natural developmental process that leads to a self-determined life for the daughter or son. For families with a child who has an intellectual disability, this process does not occur in the same way and instead involves many more challenges. AKIM-Jerusalem’s Training Apartment Program is here to help in this process by providing training for these young adults and support for their families.
It is important and helpful for these families to begin this training for independent living early. During the program the young participants learn necessary skills and get practice living in a residential community. The parents receive helpful professional guidance in order to make this gradual separation process a positive experience, building a good and healthy mutual relationship that has a new character.
Ohad, 18, comes once a week to the Training Apartment together with five other new friends. He comes there because it promises to be fun and he has a good sense that the program was made for him to help prepare his future. For Ohad and his friends, this is the first time they have slept away from home and a first step to independence. The program teaches Ohad and his friends many of the skills they will need in the future: how to fix the bed, clean, prepare a meal, visit the local supermarket to buy food, find his way around the community and especially how to get along with new roommates.
Ohad’s mother has spoken about the positive experience her son has had at the program and about the progress that he has already made. At the same time she has mixed feelings about the day when he will move away from her and into a sheltered living arrangement of his own. The Training Apartment program’s professional staff will gladly discuss Ohad’s future with his mother, including possibilities to find work, a suitable living arrangement and a leisure time program.
This project is funded by generous support from the Abraham and Sonia Rochlin Foundation, Axel Springer Stiftung, Alfred & Gertrud Bernays-Richard Stiftung, The Sobell Foundation, Miteinander e.V.,Bank Hapoalim’s “In the Community Fund” and others who wish to remain anonymous.
For more information about this program please contact us here.