Weekend residential program for people with disabilities

Project location: ITALY, Rome
Project start date: December 2012 - Project end date: October 2013
Project number: 2013-018
Beneficiary: Centro Occupazione Educazione Subnormali (C.O.E.S. ONLUS)


The project will be directed to a total of about 65 disabled users who live in conditions of social disadvantage, in families that have hard management difficulties for the above mentioned reasons.

The project therefore will:

- provide users with the opportunity to go through a preparatory path to help them gradually process the separation from family and adapt to the new situation, before being fully integrated in a residential home;
- offer them and the other children of the center a social and recreational experience to enhance their general autonomy, improve their social skills and their contact with the world outside;
- offer families the opportunity to process the separation from their child which will be integrated in a residential home and start an encouraging collaboration with them;
- offer other families, who have not chosen for their relative the residential home, to be released by the constant and pressing necessity of channelling all of their energies in the management of their child, so that they may keep some time for themselves.

The organization of a typical weekend will be as follows:

- groups will consist of a maximum of 8 users, selected in accordance with criteria of homogeneity and uniqueness of objectives;
- the relationship operators/users will be 1 to 3 to ensure the proper attention and the appropriate level of support for the completion of various activities;
- users will arrive at C.O.E.S. on Saturday morning at 9 am, and will leave for the residential home from there. Transfer will be provided by the association's van or car. All participants will avail of: breakfast, lunch and snacks on Saturday; breakfast, lunch and dinner on Sunday; breakfast, lunch and dinner on Monday; breakfast on Tuesday. Meals will be served at residential home or at external catering services. The users will work together, with the aim of strengthening their autonomy in the management of the common areas with tasks and assignments appropriately chosen and taking into account the potential and the goals linked to each one of them. The return is scheduled for Tuesday.

In order to implement the project, C.O.E.S. will use the residential home "La Casa del Ciliegio" located in Via Antonio Furlan n. 94. Some outings are scheduled in order to visits the surrounding areas and encourage socialization. Recreational activities will also be organized within the structure, such as cooking labs and employment workshops.

To carry out the project activities, C.O.E.S. will form a work team made up as follows: 1 coordinator, 1 operator / 3 users, 1 psychologist and 1 social worker.

- The coordinator will work in close contact with users during the weekend; in addition he will be responsible for the planning of social and integrative activities getting through to adequate leisure facilities (swimming-pools, museums, riding schools, meeting places);
- Operators will be responsible for providing care and assistance, supporting and encouraging users to carry out and participate to all the activities;
- The psychologist and the social worker will have the task of identify and form the group in accordance with criteria of homogeneity and uniqueness of objectives, as well as cooperating in the general organization of the weekend, also searching and contacting adequate leisure facilities;
- A meeting of the whole work-team is scheduled for every weekend (coordinator and operators) to outline the intervention programs and define the goals that will be verified in the following meetings.

Supervision will aim to provide guidelines and support operators in their work, as well as give support to the family through weekly sessions and monthly meetings.

The Nando Peretti Foundation has awarded a grant for this project. The "Weekend" project will have an important repercussion in the provincial district both in terms of numbers of subjects involved (directly and indirectly) and for its innovative approach, as disabled subjects with medium/severe disorders will be able to improve their personal autonomy, social skills, recognition and respect of shared rules and ability to manage their emotions. In this sense, the social inclusion of disabled/disadvantaged subjects will be complete, since they will be encouraged to grow their own sense of autonomy, no more in a structured and "institutional" context as it may the C.O.E.S. be, but outside and in contact with social and cultural meeting places.

This project received another grant from the NPF for activities to be to be completed by July 2015.

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