LifeScape program provides specialized training for adulthood
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - For five years, LifeScape has had a program called “Pathways to Life”. What it does is provide guidance and training for teens wondering what their next step will be after high school. We met one terrific young man who says the program has been a success for him.
What 20-year-old Jamie Fox has accomplished in two decades has outdone what the doctors told his mom Jessica when he was born.
“We were told not to expect very much from him. He wouldn’t talk, probably wouldn’t live on his own.”, Jessica Fox said.
Jamie was born with Autism and ADHD and although the doctors said he wouldn’t talk, he said his first words at 5 and has been talking every since.
“The tricky part is no matter how many times you clean it always manages to get messy again. sometimes i just want it to stay clean.”, said Jamie.
When Jamie was getting ready to graduate high school he didn’t know what he would do. He was fortunate enough to find the “pathways to life” program at LifeScape. Special Education Director Tammi Haverly tells us that the program fills in what can be a significant gap for some.
“To help them figure out where they’re going to go in life and to develop those skills to really be successful in the path they choose.”, said Haverly.
Jamie has learned custodial skills as part of Pathways. He says the work allows him time to think while working on something he can take pride in: making his corner of the world cleaner for others. When you ask him where he wants to work, he has an answer.
“Usually I start at gas stations..now I just want to work at a movie theater and for a little hobby/job...I plan to do YouTube.”, Jamie said.
But this program also offers peace of mind on a topic that is tough to think about. But when you have a child who needs a little bit of help...it’s something you always think about.
“When you have a child that’s diagnosed with a disability you become very aware of your own mortality and that you’re not always going to be there for them. and it’s been nice to see him grow independently so that I know if he has to be alone without me or without my husband he’s going to be OK.”, Jessica said.
While Jamie has learned a lot through Pathways, program leaders say they have learned a lot about how to teach these skills by Jamie’s example.
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