Evergreen Service Providers’ mission is to provide caring Host Home environments in which Individuals challenged with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD) will thrive. But what does that require?
A loving and accepting Host Home Provider (HHP) and host home setting is, of course, at the heart of success – a situation in which the Individual is made a part of the family and experiences dignity, stability, and respect for who they are as a person. But there are other factors that are key to the Individual’s ability to grow and thrive.
At the foundation of such an environment is a routine. IDD Individuals are, by nature, challenged, in varying degrees, to process information. A routine reduces the need to constantly deal with new information and enables the Individual to know what is expected on a daily basis, which fosters a strong sense of stability. A structured environment lays a solid footing for growth whereby the Individual can turn their attention to activities and decisions beyond those related to the basic tasks of daily living. That sense of stability is also conducive to easier processing of events that might otherwise trigger swings in mood and behavior for some Individuals.
To help create a routine for the Individual with whom they share their life and home, an HHP must know the Individual well in terms of capabilities, challenges, likes, wants, and needs. While HHPs help develop and guide an Individual’s routine, it’s critical that the Individual be involved in creating it. For example:
- What day do they prefer to do laundry?
- Are they most comfortable showering at night or in the morning?
- What weekly community activities or day programs are of greatest interest to them?
- Involvement in meal planning, and potentially grocery shopping
Having a say about their own routine affords a sense of control, and carrying it out, a sense of accomplishment – while building confidence and self-esteem.
It’s imperative that the routine be respected, supported and protected by the HHP, although not to the point of rigidity. Finding balance is important since the Individual also benefits from learning that there may be times when unforeseen circumstances might require a little flexibility and some change to the schedule. HHPs help maintain and protect the routine by spreading out doctor visits and other appointments so that there is minimal disruption, discussing with the Individual any changes that might occur, and including the Individual in decisions that affect their routine.
As is the case with all our work and interaction with the Individuals we serve, the routine and its development and evolution are Person Centered. We are proud that our residential program and its Host Home Providers honor and incorporate this foundational principle to structure environments and facilitate situations in which Individuals can truly thrive. Visit our website to learn more about IDD and the services we provide.