The goal of Cortney’s Place is to encourage, support, and engage individuals with IDD to meet their personal goals and work toward being more self-sufficient. Our focus is on providing adults with IDD with experiences any other adult would have while including the specialized programs and services necessary to enhance their lives. We want to provide an environment of safety, inclusion, positivity and support not only for the adults in our program but their families as well.
To participate in Cortney’s Place, an individual must have been diagnosed with a disability, be at least 18 years old, and have graduated or transitioned from high school. Individuals must demonstrate sufficient medical, emotional, social and behavioral stability to participate in a group setting and there must be a reasonable expectation that our programming will be of benefit. Cortney’s Place daily program hours are Monday through Friday from 8:00 am until 4:00 pm. Our daily program provides an adaptive/technological and therapeutic plan that offers an array of enhanced activities. The program center is eco-friendly, toxin free, with an ADA adapted environment designed to meet the physical needs of individuals with IDD. In addition to providing daytime activities and skills training, our day program provides a foundation for individuals to further improve confidence and self-esteem, acquire social interaction skills, and be directly involved in community-based activities.
We provide programs that enrich our students lives each day through interactive programming.
Music Therapy is offered twice weekly. Participants enjoy listening, singing and playing instruments. Music promotes positive changes in the well-being of participants through socialization, development of communication, memorization, cognitive function, self-expression, and motor skills. Music therapy is an effective tool to use for stimulating and motivating speech, provides a path for nonverbal communication, and can be a tool for individuals learning to use an augmentative or alternative system of communication. In addition, music is known for relaxation and reduction in stress, producing related benefits such as lower blood pressure, improved respiration, reduced heart rate, better cardiac performance, and reduced tension in muscles.
Each participant is involved in the planning and preparation of a nutritious snack two days a week and lunch one day a week. Using technology such as interactive SMART Boards and iPads to plan their weekly healthy cooking menus, they shop for all ingredients and assist in the preparation and cooking of the meal in a specially designed ADA adapted replication of a home kitchen. Together they enjoy their meal family style which helps to facilitate social skills. Individuals also assist in the clean-up from the meal. The entire cooking program engages these individuals to practice and develop their home living skills. The goal is to increase basic cooking skills with a focus on health and nutrition and an emphasis on hygiene.
Twice a week, individuals receive time with a hydrotherapist in an indoor pool at AquaSafe Swim School. The water limits stress on joints and reduces pain, muscle tightness and spasms. Mobility is greatly increased in water, promoting good muscle tone, lung capacity, flexibility, and overall fitness. Participants find it fun and relaxing, which contributes to their overall health and happiness.
Physical contact can help lower blood pressure and provide stress relief. Interacting with the dogs promotes gentleness, caring, responsibility, safety with pets, and most importantly, allows participants to express affection. Pet visits foster socialization, relaxation, laughter, increase responsiveness and mental alertness, improve communication, and enhance connection to the world.
Health and Wellness
Several times a week, individuals are provided with exercise activities that encourage them to improve their fitness. Many of our participants are sedentary and less physically active. Depending on the individual’s physical ability, we use volunteer fitness instructors, a treadmill, an elliptical, recumbent bikes, personal instruction, and individualized techniques such as stretching/range of motion to assist in meeting their fitness needs. Physical activity improves functional skills, muscle strength, and gross motor skills. In addition, during exercise the brain releases endorphins that deliver a feel-good high that can ease anxiety and depression as well as minimizing joint swelling and pain.
Individuals have the opportunity to participate in life skills such as: gardening, personal care and hygiene, safety awareness, money management skills and others. Individuals are encouraged to participate at their ability level using adaptive equipment and staff assistance as necessary. Participants who learn daily life skills are more independent and remain productive members of society.
Cortney’s Place is community focused and provides daily opportunities for individuals to see and explore the community around them. This is critical in fully integrating individuals with IDD into daily life. Participants engage in social events, plays and musicals, sporting events, museums, and more, and have visited community facilities like fire stations and police training facilities. Participating in community outings enhances the independence and community involvement of individuals. Cortney’s Place utilizes vans equipped with wheelchair lifts to transport participants to outings.
Individuals have the opportunity to participate in life skills such as: home maintenance, gardening, personal care and hygiene, safety awareness, money management skills and others. Individuals are encouraged to participate at their ability level using adaptive equipment and staff assistance as necessary. Participants who learn daily life skills are more independent and remain productive members of society.
The Snoezelen™ Room offers a relaxed atmosphere with pleasant surroundings, soothing sounds, captivating aromas, tactile experiences, massage and vibration, vibrosonic sensations, and gentle movement. Light effects and comfortable seating allows student to self-regulate by choosing sensations. The experience is safe and non-threatening and has proven to be effective for people diagnosed with traumatic brain injury, chronic pain, mood disturbances, and sensory deprivation. Participants often show peace, happiness, contentment, and improved concentration and responsiveness while in this unique and therapeutic environment.
Technology Class utilizing SMART Boards
SMART Boards® are touch sensitive screens that attach to a computer. Using the interactive boards provides a “hands on” learning approach utilizing sounds, touch, animation and video recordings. A SMART Board® helps adults with IDD improve communication skills through group collaboration. These classes open doors for our students to educate themselves and learn more about the fast paced world of technology. In addition, iPads are available and used throughout the day in various program aspects including meal planning, communication and technology, art activities, games, etc.