Creating Her Happy Life: Meet Colleen!

When Colleen moved into a place of her own for the very first time, she was more prepared than many young adults who reach this milestone. From carefully saving her receipts and recording what she spends in her personal ledger to mastering the use of public transportation, Colleen has been working on multiple skill sets to prepare her for this day. She knows how to make an efficient shopping trip to the grocery store or mall, has worked through fire evacuation and life safety activities, and has identified exercise as a favorite new hobby.  

Colleen sits in the bedroom of her new place.

Colleen sits in the bedroom of her new place.

What makes Colleen’s story a little bit different is that she was moving out of a 24-hour supervised living environment. When Colleen met her goal of moving into her own place, she reached a whole new level of independence!

As part of the upcoming NYALL Conference 2019 (April 3-5), Colleen will join members of her DDINY support team as well as SimplyHome partner Meghan O’Sullivan for a presentation entitled, “Doing My Own Thing: Transition to Independence Using Enabling Technology.”

The NYALL conference program describes the presentation this way: “Join us as Colleen and the staff share an account of her journey towards creating her happy life. In addition to her personal story, staffing issues and fiscal considerations will be shared and discussed.”

In addition to Colleen telling her own story, the staff will share the story of balancing Colleen’s risk with her desire for independence. DDINY has implemented a creative combination of supports for Colleen including enabling technology from SimplyHome. Meghan O’Sullivan will discuss technology solutions and how they are customized to support Colleen’s independence.

Colleen’s supportive technology includes a SimplyHome System with these features:

  • A Ring video doorbell

  • Door sensors (including one for a medicine cabinet)

  • A smoke alarm monitor

  • A motion sensor

  • An induction stove with heat sensors

  • A panic button that allows her to connect with staff support

With the technology in place, Colleen can administer her own medication, cook what and when she wants, and most importantly, feel safe and secure in her own home.

Colleen works out at the gym. Exercise is a favorite activity for Colleen.

Colleen works out at the gym. Exercise is a favorite activity for Colleen.

Now that she’s made her big move, Colleen has set her sights on mastering new skills. She is working on checking in with staff by phone, letting others know if she needs assistance with activities or transportation, and communicating her latest goals. Whether at work or home, trying new activities or enjoying a workout at the local YMCA, Colleen is thriving in her independence as a young adult.  

You can watch Colleen’s story here: