Safety & Stability
The two main factors most people look for when choosing a place to live is safety and stability. For people living with disabilities and mental health conditions, it can be particularly hard to find a place that offers both of those things. This was the case for Terry and Jan. They’ve had to navigate a long, bumpy road but finally they’ve found the perfect place.
This long road to find a safe apartment started when Terry and Jan began working with Reach’s In-Home Support services about 10 years ago. At the time, Terry and Jan, were homeless, living in a hotel because their previous place had burned down. As Terry said, “Most of the time we ate fast food like McDonald’s. You know, we didn’t have a kitchen, only a microwave.” Within a few weeks, one of Reach’s Community Living Specialists was able to assist them in finding a stable place to live.
Having a stable place to live, allowed Terry and Jan to start focusing on themselves and their well-being. With the support of their Community Living Specialist, they started to cook on their own and make Terry’s favorite meal; fried chicken, go grocery shopping, regularly attend doctor and dentist appointments, learn budgeting and other tasks that come with living on your own. In addition, Terry and Jan started to attend a day program three times a week, using Metro Mobility to get to and from the program. Terry loves to attend the day program because he gets to use his mind and body along with “seeing all my friends and lunch break.”
With Terry and Jan thriving on their own, the only thing missing was the safety aspect of where they lived. After a few years of being on a waitlist, they were finally able to move into a safe and stable apartment with the help of Aly, their current Community Living Specialist. “It’s so quiet. You don’t hear anything,” said Terry. In addition to safety and stability, this new apartment complex, offers many amenities including: potlucks, flu shots, monthly food shelf visits, activities, visits by a podiatrist and so much more. Not to mention, Terry and Jan have made many new friends within the complex.
With a safe and stable place to live, Terry and Jan continue to work with Aly weekly to receive additional supports. Terry and Jan absolutely adore Aly and Aly adores them right back. “They are like my adopted grandparents,” said Aly. Over the years of working together, Terry, Jan and Aly have built a very supportive, positive relationship that is based around their great senses of humor. This is one of the funny stories they like to share with people. Recently, Aly was driving Terry back to his apartment after an appointment when they got pulled over. Terry knows most of the cops in his area because he sometimes needs assistance. Rumor has it, the cop saw Terry in the car and pulled them over so they could say hi…no ticket or warning was issued. “Yeah, I saved the day,” Terry laughed.
Terry and Jan may have faced a long, bumpy road to get where they are, but they are enjoying the stability, safety and independence of their current apartment. In the upcoming months, Terry and Jan are looking forward to Terry’s sister, who lives in another state, coming to visit. Someday, Terry and Jan hope to get the opportunity to go visit her. Would Terry and Jan recommend Reach to friend? “To me it’s a very good program,” Terry said with a smile.