July 27, 2021
By: Patti Huston
Easterseals Adult Day Services, located near Pittsburgh, PA, provides a caring environment for adults with disabilities. As a dually licensed center, our participants come from a wide variety of backgrounds with different life experiences. Each participant is cared for in a kind and respectful way. The person-centered approach allows for a holistic perspective that offers attention to one’s physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual wellness.
Their day is structured but tailored to meet their individual needs and interests. Visual needs are assisted with enlarged print, magnifiers, or audio books. Everyone is encouraged to ‘try’ to participate. Activities are modified so all are involved.
Entertainment is a big part of their day, whether it is a special person invited to the center to share their talents or even staff have been known to provide some funny situations! Easterseals ADS welcomes guests virtually and in-person to support the needs of our participants. Professionals provide our group with training that improves their knowledge and ability to address everyday life events. Safety in the home and community is emphasized. Encouraging our participants to be the best self-advocate they can be is at the heart of these trainings. Whether it is nutrition, hygiene, or getting along with other, everyone has the opportunity to learn.
A long-time friend is Peggy and her beloved golden retriever. Bailey is trained in pet therapy and performs many tricks for everyone. You will know Bailey wants more attention if she sits on your feet to get a scratch behind the ears or to have her fun costume straightened! Another friend that our folks enjoy is our talented guest, Anthony, The Storyteller, from a local library. He provides fun, seasonal stories and even plays a few songs on the piano! Our participants smile, laugh, and sing while moving to the music. Tai-chi practiced in the center and lead by a volunteer introduces our participants to another form of exercise. Erin, our intern, and Patti lead team building games that strengthen collaboration.
What is so special about Adult Day Service? The people are what we are about. The staff offer a listening ear for our participants. Families, caregivers, and members like the program provided by Easterseals staff. “I love you guys and what you do”! “I like coming to school/work.” “They don’t like to miss a day.” Warmly greeted and respected is my feeling of the ambience at our center. Our setting is similar to school, work, or their home and caring is our major objective. Our members are happy! From arrival to departure clients are supervised and needs are addressed. Intertwined throughout the day, socializing is huge!
This July we talked a lot about summertime things to do near and far. Our National Parks were discussed and included the Park Rangers that maintain everything in each park. This fall, our seniors and younger adults will engage in stories about autumn and the fun sights and sounds. The Program Specialists, Sharnette and Matthew, are a big part of the members’ day, offering indoor academics or community outings.
Our Community Participation program continues to expand, and we see great growth in our Easterseals participants as they engage in our local communities. The focus of our outings remains varied with opportunities for service to others, academic learning, participating in music and cultural arts programs, enjoying nature, exploring one of our many wonderful Pittsburgh museums and participating in everyday life activities such as shopping, going to the movies, sharing a meal with others and more.
What are some of the benefits of ADS? Interaction with peers increases their self-esteem. Socialization improves their mood. Adult Day Services provides a reason for participants to be out of the home, providing opportunity to exercise their verbal, cognitive, and physical abilities. Another goal is to allow our participants to practice these skills leading to enhancing or maintaining their level of ability.
More about Adult Services at https://www.easterseals.com/wcpenna/our-programs/adult-services/.