The L.I.F.E. (Leisure Increases Freedom & Enjoyment) Program is a NISRA year-round life skills program, using community-based recreation activities to enhance the quality of life for young adults, ages 22-35, with a mild to moderate cognitive disability.
Participants plan and actively participate in fitness activities, planning and preparing meals, scheduling field trips, performing service projects, and other leisure time experiences.
L.I.F.E. Program Elements
- Fitness (monthly trip to a local gym, walking track)
- Fine arts (instructor led, open studio format)
- Music (group instruction, karaoke)
- Group games and sports
- Day trips to nearby attractions (museums, train trips, sporting events, theater productions)
- Daily group discussions (current events, allowance for personal sharing)
- Peer interaction, relationship building (team building, small group exercises)
- Conflict resolution (guest speakers, scenarios, discuss situations, role-playing)
- Volunteer opportunities (food pantry, animal shelter, community gardens, senior living)
- Explore facilities throughout NISRA’s 13 member districts
- Practice public transportation use as a group
Independent Living Skills
- Personal health & nutrition (guest speakers, group discussions)
- Monthly grocery shopping and cooking experiences
- Money management (In-house Cafe’ business)
- Home life maintenance (gardening, cleaning)
Every day varies, but a typical day starts at 9:30 am with check in, greeting peers & staff, followed by group discussion & sharing. There may be a review of the schedule before departing for a community activity. Lunch (typically a sack lunch) can be enjoyed during the outing or in house, followed by games, learning, “You Choose,” or a visiting instructor-led activity. The program concludes at 2:30 pm.
The program meets for 45 weeks throughout the year, with moderate breaks for holidays and planning & preparation for the upcoming session.
To Learn More...
To inquire about L.I.F.E.:
- Contact Katie Weadley at [email protected] or 815-459-0737, ext. 229.
- A meeting will be scheduled to complete the assessment and interview the applicant and a parent or guardian. This process will determine the specific needs of the applicant and whether he or she meets the eligibility criteria of the program.
- NISRA will notify the applicant and family of the outcome of the application process. All decisions regarding eligibility will be made by NISRA.
- NISRA reserves the right to reassess participants for eligibility throughout the year as needed.