Community Echo Brings Application to Classroom Lessons
Easing Anxiety, Inspiring Hope
-Written by Pauletta Wessel, Habilitation Coordinator, EchoingU of Southwest Ohio
Transitioning from living with your parents to living on your own can be challenging. This can be especially true for people with intellectual disabilities. EchoingU of Southwest Ohio has begun a new program designed to ease the anxiety that may come with this step.
Community Echo allows students to take the knowledge they have learned in the classroom setting of EchoingU and go into their community to apply it.
One of the groups, the Community Echo Financial Group, recently did an activity with grocery store comparisons and following a budget. Their assignment followed a real-life scenario. Each student was told they had $50 to spend for the week on groceries, two non-food items (toothpaste/toilet paper, etc.), and pet food. With this information, the students traveled to three grocery store chains to determine the best deals and learn how/if they would be able to stay within their budget. Their teacher, Connie Jackson, commented that they became frustrated at first because they weren’t able to buy the foods they liked (all name brands). But, as realization set in, they started to shop the sales and made it work.
As one student shared, “Now I understand why my house manager buys off-brand food, it is so expensive!”
Community Echo also offers groups in Job Exploration, Volunteerism, Social Skills, and Self-Advocacy. The addition of this practical, hands-on approach has brought the skills students have learned to life.
EchoingU continues to work towards becoming the choice for Day Hab programs in Southwestern Ohio.