Blog #154~Adult Day Program 6 Month Update
On my son’s 22nd birthday this past February, the little yellow bus stopped coming to the door. My son, Nick has Down syndrome and autism and has aged out of school. For the past 6 months, Nick has been going to an adult day program. This week I want to share some of the activities he’s been doing in this excellent program at the Keeler Center.
Nick’s adult day program is filled with many fulfilling activities each day. Mondays are dedicated field trip days.
Here are some of the places Nick has visited in the community:
Fabyan Park Japanese Garden
Fox Valley Park District Greenhouse
Red Oak Nature Center
Local restaurants (Noodles & Company, Dunkin Doughnuts, Culvers, Colonial Café, etc..)
In the facility, Nick participates in a variety of activities:
Vocational jobs (cleaning and vacuuming sensory room, recycling, shredding, work bins, gardening, menu planning, cooking, etc..)
Social circle (News to You, greeting and using AAC devices)
Table and bin work
Arts and Crafts (for art fairs, mothers/father’s day, making cards, painting, etc..)
Recreational (gym activities, yoga, etc..)
Fun Fridays (Holiday theme parties, dancing, karaoke, games, concerts, cookouts, movies, etc..)
Speech therapy (insurance private pay), to work on articulation and using his AAC device
Outside the facility, his group does community recycling, shopping for cooking day as well as volunteer jobs. One of the sites is at a local church, (stuffing bulletins and cleaning the nursery). The other workplace is at a food pantry, where they organize and stock inventory, like dried beans, cereal and peanut butter.
Nick has a full life and rewarding activities in his adult day program. The staff is very dedicated, caring, welcoming and patient. Yes, patient! Nick’s pulled several fire alarms the last few months. The behaviorist on staff has put a plan in place, and met with the staff to curtail this ongoing problem. Hey, it’s Nick’s world, the rest of us are just trying to keep up. The current fire alarm pull count is now 40 pulls since 3rd grade.
While his speech is limited due to having a dual diagnosis of Down syndrome and autism, I can tell that he is very happy in this program. How do I know? When I wake him up in the morning he is excited to get dressed and out the door. The other day I was driving him and his buddy Josh to the site. Just before we crossed over the Fox River, Nick started saying “Keeler” with a big thumbs up. It warms my heart knowing that Nick is happy and contributing to society. That’s what is in my noggin this week.
@Down Syndrome With A Slice Of Autism on: