As our children get older, and parents get older, we realize more urgently the need for housing for our young people. They can see their siblings going off to college and getting their own apartments. Our special kids want to experience this independence away from the family home. After much research and discussions with people who had gone this route before us, we decided we wanted the Adult Family Home model here in Issaquah. That is a family type home in a regular neighborhood where five individuals would live with their live in care provider.
The care provider contracts through DDD to be the Medicaid Personal Care provider for each client. The clients pay a rate set by DDD as their participation rate for board and room. This amount pays for the food, household supplies, utilities, insurance, and the day-to-day operation of the home. Adult family homes are licensed by the State, and subject to oversight and spontaneous annual inspections by the State licensor, DDD Adult Family home teams, case managers, nurse oversight, as well as the ombudsman.
LEO does take applications for residence in the homes, although the final selection is up to the care provider. The main criterion is compatibility, with preference to residents of Issaquah, Sammamish, North Bend, and other east side cities. Our philosophy for our homes, which is shared by the care providers, is to provide a safe, caring environment in which these young adults will flourish in this first step of independence. All residents are encouraged to be as self sufficient as possible, both in their physical self-care and social choices for leisure time activities. The care providers provide the assistance as is necessary for the daily living skills. Clients are encouraged to participate in outside recreation activities, as well as some employment or day program.
We now have two homes fully occupied and running very smoothly. It is a thrill to see the joy and contentment of these residents in their homes. In a recent survey we learned the vision of several more parents for their children. Many want the Adult Family Home model repeated in this area.
Independent living is also possible in our community. Many apartments accept Section 8 vouchers, which our population can obtain within a few months by calling their DDD case manager, or Katherine Festa at 206-263-9053, or firstname.lastname@example.org