Anixter Center’s mission is to provide an array of services and support to help people with disabilities and related challenges live, learn, work, and play in the community. Located in Highland Park, the agency’s Adult Community Transition (ACT) program helps facilitate the transition of young adults with developmental disabilities from their safe, nurturing school environments to life in the broader community. This is accomplished through individualized employment and volunteer opportunities, case management, educational activities, socialization, and recreational activities developed to maximize their independence, giving these adults “the ability to soar.” The Foundation’s grant was used to fund art therapy for young adults with developmental disabilities who reside in Highland Park and Highwood.
Center for Enriched Living (CEL)
The Center for Enriched Living (CEL) enhances and enriches the lives of people with developmental and intellectual disabilities – from youth through adulthood. CEL provides a space for their members to grow and learn new social, educational, and independent living skills with a community of friends and a world of opportunities. CEL celebrates the unique contributions of everyone, where all voices are heard and personal choices are respected. Highland Park Community Foundation’s grant provides financial aid to Highland Park residents with developmental disabilities so they can participate in CEL programming that includes the REACH (For Success) adult day programs; summer camp; dances and excursions; afternoon programs; and evening and weekend programs.
Center for Independent Futures
Center for Independent Futures upholds a vision for the future where individuals with disabilities have access to all opportunities of a full life. The Center creates sustainable solutions through community living options, personal networks, and lifelong planning and education, tailored to support individuals and families as well as schools and agencies. The Foundation’s grant serves individuals with disabilities/family members who reside or are readying to live in Highland Park and Highwood. Funding supports the expansion of person-centered services, primarily life-skills tutoring and readying young adult children with intellectual/developmental disabilities for adult community living.
Glenkirk serves individuals with intellectual disabilities. Programs include: residential and employment/day services; psychological and behavior health therapies; respite; and home-based services. They operate a social enterprise of secure document destruction business. Glenkirk’s ultimate objective is to have the individuals they service continue to grow, achieve increasingly greater levels of independence and autonomy, and work and live in their communities, impacting the community as much as it impacts them. HPCF’s grant will help support a residential facility for community members with mild to moderate disabilities.
Highland Park Library
Highland Park Library offers a free introductory course in basic computer programming to children and individuals with special needs, which is supported by HPCF’S grant. In this program, young children and individuals of all ages with special needs will engage with wooden robots called Cubettos. Cubettos are supported by a Montessori-led programming system that introduces the basics of computer programming through hands-on discovery and without the use of a computer or a screen.
Stuart I Raskas Friendship Circle of Illinois
The Friendship Circle’s mission is to empower today’s teens to bridge the gap between families of children with special needs and the rest of the community. Volunteers offer friendship as well as social and educational experiences, enriching lives and reaping the rewards of selfless giving. The Friendship Circle extends a helping hand to families who have children with special needs and involves them in a full range of social and Judaic experiences. The Circle’s unique formula introduces teenage volunteers to the children and their families, and through the shared experiences, all are enriched. The Foundation’s grant provides weekly home visits to children/young adults with disabilities by trained teen volunteers.