Inspiring Stories

Robert's Story

robert-story"I like helping my friends." Robert Tyler

Background:

Robert is a man in his mid thirties who enjoys going out for coffee, working out in his local fitness gym, riding his bicycle, swimming, working at his job, and mowing and raking lawns for neighbors. Robert enjoys many friends and connections at his workplace and in his community.

Yet Robert's life was not always filled with these connections. He came from the foster care system and a decade ago, very few people knew who he was. Robert was referred for job placement by the Maine Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation Services to Katahdin Friends Inc., (KFI), a non-profit agency serving adults with disabilities in Penobscot County. Subsequently, Robert began receiving supported living and job development services from KFI in 1995.

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Ed's Story

ed-story_sm"I WANT MY OWN APARTMENT BUILDING!"

Ed was about thirty-five years old when he began telling people he wanted an "apartment building". People at Ed's support agency, KFI, had been TASH members for a number of years and were informed and inspired by many leaders in the area of supported living to rethink how and where people with developmental disabilities could live. As a result, many of Ed's friends were moving out of foster care homes and into their own apartments with supports from KFI. Ed wanted this same opportunity, but apparently wanted an entire building rather than a small piece of it!

Ed's residential history included living with his family in Connecticut and Maine until the age of seven when he was sent to live at Pineland Training Center, Maine's institution for people with intellectual disabilities (now closed). As a young adult, Ed was transitioned out of Pineland Center to a variety of foster homes, finally ending up at a foster home in Lincoln, ME where he lived for 17 years. Ed was always described as having "aggressive behaviors".

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Building Communities Since 1962

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