The Independent Living Program is a beginning stop in the process of reclaiming personal power for a person with a disability.
The Independent Living Program offers the opportunities for people with disabilities to experience success and failure at managing the ordinary affairs of their daily life. These affairs are not so ordinary when others are controlling the decisions and circumstances affecting the person.
“CPWD staff is supportive, but also must be firm about the requirement that the student work at his or her plan for moving out into the larger world.”
- Page, Dixon, Powell (1981)
The independent living philosophy of CPWD differs from the custodial model prevalent today. Custodial models stress dependency rather than self-sufficiency and disempower the clients being served. The Independent Living Program encourages people with disabilities to take control of their lives. People come together to offer support and understanding about the process of reclaiming personal power, and the consumers realize that they are not alone in their struggle.
After referral, assessment and acceptance into the program, each person develops an Independent Living Plan and works closely with staff members to address Independent Living Skills such as:
- peer counseling
- self advocacy
- money management
- benefits counseling
- homemaking skills
- social skills
A sense of community is fostered in this program. Services are provided to people with a variety of disabilities to promote cross-disability awareness. Groups are offered to provide support, planning and problem solving.