Giving Tuesday: November 28, 2017

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$2K in a day! That's our goal for #GivingTuesday (November 28), but you can start today to help people like Patrick. Read his story below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Independent Living is Freedom

Patrick’s eyes light up when he talks about living on his own.

He even makes doing annoying household chores, like washing dishes and grocery shopping, sound as exciting as a day in the amusement park.

“It feels good. I feel free. I’m doing what I need to do, taking my medicine on my own, going to work, cleaning at home. It sounds boring but…”

‘Boring’ is much better than ‘rock bottom,’ which is where Patrick says he found himself years ago. By his own admission, he wasn’t ready when he moved out of his mother’s house as a young adult. He floundered on his own.  He stopped taking his medication and handling his day-to-day responsibilities. Then, he started seeing and hearing things and landed in the hospital. It was a seriously dark time that he doesn’t like to talk about.

Continuum met Patrick during his hospitalization and, after ensuring he got the proper medication, brought him to one of our Mental Health Services programs where he lived in a shared apartment setting with access to support staff. There, he received compassionate attention to his personal development and encouragement as he learned skills to become more independent and self-reliant. That included learning how to manage his mental illness, daily living skills like budgeting and household chores. He attended group therapy and the staff also connected him to doctors and other supports in the community.

Three years after Patrick’s initial move to a Continuum program, his case manager found him an apartment where he has been living completely on his own – with weekly check-ups – for a year and a half. “It’s AWESOME. No roommates. Just me.” 

His case manager also got him an interview with Continuum’s cleaning crew. He now works in the administrative building where his ever-present grin, quick humor and solid work ethic make him a beloved staff member.

Patrick’s new sense of independence has done so much for his confidence that, last summer, he saved up – and worked through his fear of flying – to take his first solo flight across the country to visit a friend in California. He had so much fun that he even made the trip a second time.

“I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Continuum,” Patrick says.  He tells everyone he sees struggling, including the homeless man he saw on the bus with his dog just last week, that it’s a great place to be.  

“Go to Continuum,” he told him. “They will help you.”

Help us give someone the independent, full life that opens his or her world by donating to Continuum on #GivingTuesday (#GivingLifeDay).

Your donation makes you eligible to win a prize. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram for more information.

Continuum of Care, Inc.’s mission is to enable people who are challenged with mental illness, intellectual disability or other disability, and/or addiction, to rebuild a meaningful life and thrive in the community.