Our mission is to create a safe, inclusive & independent/interdependent housing opportunity for the differently abled to remain within their community, where they feel accepted, connected, and supported.
Credo Co for Sustainable Life is a not for profit organization comprised of parents and professionals working together to address the residential needs of young adults with developmental disabilities in Southern Vermont and surrounding towns. The group was formed in response to the lack of available housing and service relative to the significant and immediate needs of the intellectually challenged community members who will never have a chance or means to rise above the states poverty levels.
The experience may be of particular relevance in light of the current move toward personalization in care services and understanding the implications this has for fostering integration at a level that encompasses things like a "sense of community, home, and belonging". This personalization is not just about tailoring services to individual needs, but represents an attempt to shift the balance of power among cares and care-for, from relationships of dependency to relationships of mutuality. The aim is to move away from both the perception and treatment of those with disabilities as passive recipients of services and encourage arrangements of co-production, where they are equal participants in the management of their own support and care plans.
Beyond that, the significance of feeling useful as a key ingredient in the experience of community is directly acknowledged: "...communities are stronger where people who use services are helped to find good way of making a valued local contribution, not just seen as in need of care."
Our intent is take this event further; it is not just a matter of helping the intellectually disabled person to develop self-esteem and a sense of identity through performing socially useful tasks, but a matter becoming conscious of the social value of disability in and of itself.
Our goals are to provide parents and individuals with the option of living in the community, rather than seeking institutionalization. Credo Co Sustainable Life is governed by a board of directors selected from a broad community base. We are committed to the Non-Discriminatory delivery of services and are an affirmative action equal opportunity group. The board of directors realized the need for a comprehensive array of services and developed the long-term goal of providing from infant throughout life within the community setting.
Flexibility and choice are many housing models emerging as desirable in different circumstances. The underlying principle that unifies them is consistent, however: the need for flexibility and choice. There is such variation in the abilities, needs and desires of people with intellectual disabilities and their families, that there must be a corresponding range of housing and support of options. The approach is one in which the person with an intellectual disability or his or her advocate is directly involved in planning and choosing the housing and support services that best meet their needs. In a person centered approach, funding is portable, tied to the individual rather than to an agency or a facility.