April is National Autism Awareness Month, and Autism now affects 1 in 68 children and 1 in 42 boys. According to the National Library of Medicine, “Autism is a developmental disorder that appears in the first 3 years of life, and affects the brain’s normal development of social and communication skills.” Typically, you see much of the focus on ‘children with Autism.” However, as graduation approaches and these children now become young adults, what happens after they graduate? How can parents start looking into appropriate programs and facilities, such as D&S Community Services, ahead of time to ensure their young adult is going to be successful outside of their home?
It may be surprising to find out that the wait list for Home and Community Based Services (HCS) eligibility can be 10 – 14 years. That means that if a parent doesn’t plan ahead for the future, their adult children will have limited independent living opportunities.
D&S Community Services has put together a list of questions for parents and caregivers to ask as they seek appropriate care for their child now so that they are as prepared as possible for their child’s future.
Questions to Ask:
- How would you plan to transition my child from school and/or my home to a group home?
- Do you offer work activities or day programming? How do you determine which one is the most beneficial? What if I want to switch?
- What training on Autism do the staff receive? How often do they receive training?
- How are daily routines determined? How do you work in my child’s routines or preferences?
- What kind of life skills or other training can you offer? How are these skills taught, and who teaches them?
- What other kinds of supports do you offer or can we access? How do we access other services?
D&S Community Services offers Independent and quality living services for individuals with intellectual disabilities located in Texas, Kentucky and Tennessee. D&S promotes optimal independence and quality of life by providing exceptional person-centered services. With services that include over 300 residential homes, host homes and in-home support, D&S Community Services has a level of support to each family’s needs. Please visit their website at www.dscommunity.com.