As Consumers move into their own residence for the first time through LRI’s Nursing Home Transition program, they are often at a loss as to how to live independently. The Independent Living Skills Training Program offers classes on basic skills such as Money Management, Socialization and Communication, Managing Your Personal Assistant, Health, Wellness, and Nutrition, Consumer Rights and Responsibilities and How to Use Public Transportation. The classes also offer Consumers the opportunity to learn from and share with other Consumers.
Independent Living Skills Training Snapshots
Below is a short description of the Independent Living Skills Training Classes offered at Liberty Resources, Inc., the Center for Independent Living serving people with cross-disabilities in Philadelphia. For more information about any activity listed, please contact ILS at 215-634-2000 Ext. 325. Visit Upcoming Events for information about when classes are held.
Managing Your Personal Assistant (MYPA)
This class is for Consumers who work with an attendant but do not necessarily feel “in control” of their personal care. Consumers learn how to build and strengthen a working relationship of mutual respect with their attendant. Consumers learn effective communication skills, how to resolve conflicts, how to schedule attendants and job tasks, and how to develop an Emergency Evacuation Plan. Also, Consumers interested in hiring their own attendants will learn the processes to recruit, interview, evaluate, hire and terminate their attendant-employees.
Consumer Rights & Responsibilities / Introduction to Independent Living
Consumers learn about their rights as disabled persons and the responsibilities they have to ensure these rights. Emphasis is placed on helping Consumers identify their local, state and national representatives and the voting process. The history of Independent Living Movement and where it is going is discussed also.
Any Consumer who wishes to live independently needs to know how to handle his/her money. Consumers will learn how to develop a budget, safe use of debit and credit cards, check writing and other methods of paying bills.
Health, Wellness, and Nutrition
Consumers learn the basics for living a healthy lifestyle and cover topics such as maintaining wellness, first aid and personal care, stress management, mental health, sex and sexuality and how to work effectively with health care professionals. Additionally, they are provided information for a better understanding of managed care, Medicaid and Medicare. Consumers also learn about nutrition, how to budget and shop wisely for food, how to use adaptive kitchen equipment and how to make healthy, tasty meals.
Accessing Public Transportation
With ParaTransit eligibility becoming tighter and tighter, Consumers can no longer depend upon SEPTA’s door-to-door service. Consumers will learn about all modes of accessible transportation in Philadelphia, what assistance is available to Consumers while traveling, how to handle cash, tokens and passes responsibly, and how to report broken equipment. Each Consumer receives individual instruction riding a bus or other mode of transportation.
Social and Communication Skills
One of the more difficult aspects of living in the community for Consumers is developing relationships and learning how to communicate their thoughts and needs. Self-esteem, assertiveness, and the many different methods of communication are discussed.