K.C. Realizes Joys of Independent Living Through Willows Way Realities Program
Willows Way provides independent living services in numerous ways. The Developmental Disabilities Resource Board of St. Charles County supports our Realities service which provides approved adults up to eight hours of individualized services in areas such as teaching menu planning and personal budgeting; assisting in roommate and house searches; help with doctor's visits and improving self-advocacy skills.
The Missouri Department of Mental Health (DMH) also funds independent living skills development to clients in the Realities program by enabling support for younger individuals living with family members as well as funding services for individuals with greater support needs.
In 2015, K.C. was living with his parents, working at McDonald’s and attending occasional classes and social events at Willows Way. K.C. and his parents asked if the agency had any leads for potential roommates with whom K.C. might live independently. Willows Way was able to introduce K.C. to another client who was moving out of a family member’s home. The men met and with staff support soon found a two-bedroom apartment together in St. Peters, MO.
K.C. transferred to a McDonald’s restaurant closer to his new home and obtained transportation services - he no longer relies on his parents to take him to work. K.C. makes his own grocery list and, with support from staff, is able to shop within his weekly budget. K.C. is now familiar with his neighborhood and feels comfortable walking to nearby places on his own. K.C. has made tremendous progress – he enjoys living independently and being responsible for himself.
K.C. and his parents are pleased with his progress since receiving services that promote and encourage an independent lifestyle. If you know of someone who might be interested in receiving these services, please call Melodee Benton at 636-757-0513 or email at melodeeb@willowswayorg.