JARC Receives $25,000 Grant to Support New Therapeutic Program for Persons Served Living with Developmental Disabilities

JARC Receives $25,000 Grant to Support New Therapeutic Program for Persons Served Living with Developmental Disabilities

Donald R. and Esther Simon Foundation grant to be used to help combat isolation and depression in persons served, brought on by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

JARC, a Metro Detroit based non-profit agency that serves individuals with developmental disabilities, has received a $25,000 grant from the Donald R. and Esther Simon Foundation to support a relatively new therapeutic program to combat isolation and depression brought on by the Covid-19 Pandemic.

The program provides individualized support,

enabling each person served to partake in activities that benefit them. This grant will also allow the program to promote leisure time and will be led by newly hired JARC therapeutic staff who will engage with persons served in JARC group homes in a COVID-safe way.

Like so many, one of the biggest challenges of the pandemic for JARC persons served has been isolation.

“Most of those we serve have even more downtime now, and that has brought with it mental health struggles such as depression and anger,” said JARC CEO Shaindle Braunstein. “Mental health plays a strong role in physical health, so it is crucial that we address isolation and do what we can to safely mitigate its effects. The JARC therapy program addresses that need by providing the necessary mental stimulation and encouragement needed for persons served to be active and engaged.”

Group home providers like JARC exist

to support the physical needs of adults with developmental disabilities. For various reasons, most persons served cannot rely on family and are dependent upon JARC to meet all their needs, including emotional support.

Serving their mental health needs has always been vital, but the pandemic has amplified its importance in JARC homes especially when day programs were closed, and persons served were unable to socialize outside of the home.

While the State of Michigan provides much of the funding for their physical needs, other costs for needs like mental health, therapeutic activities, and engagement are not funded. Part of JARC’s mission is to meet this need and, as a result, JARC pays for these services independently.

To date, the newly instituted program

already has several success stories. These new activities combined with individualized therapies with a trained professional has helped JARC persons served to further express themselves and uncover new abilities. The additional emotional support provided allows persons served to have the opportunity to thrive and live their best life.

About JARC

JARC serves individuals with developmental disabilities in 80 locations, including 24-hour care in group homes, independent living settings for adults, and respite services for children, teens and young adults. Their mission is to enrich the lives of people with disabilities through gentle and loving support, valued relationships, and engagement with the community, in accordance with Jewish values. For more information, visit https://www.jarc.org/

About the Donald R. and Esther Simon Foundation

The Donald R. and Esther Simon Foundation was founded by Mr. and Mrs. Simon in 2005. With recognition of the family’s original roots in Michigan, the Simon Foundation supports projects that address Jewish life and identity, cancer research and support services, the cultural arts and social justice issues which make a positive impact in the lives of this generation and the next.

*Logo courtesy of JARC

Cynthia Tait

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