An important note about the MR term used on this page
Marbridge avoids using the term “mental retardation” out of the profound respect we hold for our residents’ incredible talents and abilities. Instead, we prefer terms such as intellectual disabilities, cognitive challenges and developmental disabilities. However, we realize many people still use the term to search for care solutions, and it continues to be used as an official diagnostic term. Hence, we have included the term on our web site.
An alternative to group homes for adults with mental retardation
Adulthood brings new challenges for families concerned about the health and quality of life of a loved one with mental retardation. Assisted living is a suitable option for adults with mental retardation who need help or supervision (such as medical assistance or guidance) but can manage most daily activities on their own. But when it comes to assisted living, quality of life issues are what concern families most. At Marbridge we provide a program of training, supervision and activities that directly address quality of life. That’s what makes Marbridge a viable alternative to group homes adults with mental retardation. The combination of a safe environment, engaging activities and training tailored to the needs of each individual provides an overall sense of well-being and satisfaction for the adults with mental retardation who live at Marbridge.
We provide an individualized program for adults with mental retardation
Because no single adult with Down syndrome is quite like another, our Individual Program Plan addresses each person’s unique abilities and attributes in designing a care program. This what makes Marbridge a special place for Down syndrome adults and a viable alternative to group homes for mentally retarded adults. Any program for adults with mental retardation must consider the type of training and activities needed to assist that person in reaching his or her goals. Our residential care for adults with mental retardation is tailored to their needs and interests.
Life skills training; training and placement into jobs for adults with mental retardation
From tips on grooming, to fitness and exercise—residents with mental retardation receive a variety of life-skills-based training. Marbridge offers training in shopping, cooking, money management, healthy eating choices and much more. The goal of Life Skills training is to enable residents to reach the highest level of personal independence possible in their daily routines.
Residents with mental retardation who desire employment are often enrolled in Job Skills Training. They learn the importance of staying on task, arriving at work on time, taking directions and adopting appropriate behaviors in an employment setting. Residents develop resume writing and interviewing skills and learn to set goals for the type of employment desired. Marbridge has had much success in training and finding jobs for mentally retarded adults, both on-campus and in the community.
An experience similar to college for adults with mental retardation
Employment training and personal enrichment courses have been provided by Marbridge since its founding in 1953. However, in 2001 a more structured training program was developed that integrated education, socialization, recreation, independent living skills and employment instruction. This training program now serves more than 160 residents in the Ranch and Village communities. For adults with mental retardation who are graduating from high school, Marbridge can provide a college-like experience.
Organized into semesters, the training schedule is based on each resident’s Individual Program Plan (IPP) goals. Generally, job skills training places within the top five goals identified in all IPPs. Job skills training is offered only to residents who list employment as a goal he or she wants to achieve. That’s because our job skills training is not a job coach program. It’s different from what most families encounter in high school or other care communities, where a job coach accompanies the individual and stands by them all day. Our program trains residents to be independent employees. At Marbridge, we believe young people with mental retardation can become self-determining adults, capable of competing—and winning—in the competitive workplace. Time and again, they prove us right.