By Monica Gonzalez
This article was originally published in FCSN EBADP/LIFE – A Quarterly Newsletter
Client Council started in June 2020. After overcoming a few hurdles, as is what happens when new groups form, the Client Council began again with a new group of members for each program. By the end of 2020, the first main Client Council body had been formed. Client Council members have played an integral part in making the LIFE and ADP programs what they are today.
Client Council members meet with each other once weekly in order to discuss their ideas, or any questions or concerns that they have about the program. They also will meet once a month with the entire client body in order to hear the voices of other members of the program.
My experience while working alongside the Client Council members to help have their voices and needs met has been a completely positive experience thus far. Each of our Client Council members in both programs appear to have very similar goals. They all have a positive outlook on life and come together in their singular yet separate Client Council units in order to help make their individual programs better for everyone.
It appears that our Client Council members strive to make a difference in not only their own lives but also in the lives of every client in both the ADP and LIFE Day Programs. For the duration of this Client Council, each of the members have worked towards coming up with new ideas for classes and activities, as well as monthly planning for upcoming Holiday parties to be celebrated.
The Client Council members have also discussed their ideas for possible vocational training opportunities that can be conducted over Zoom during Shelter in Place. So far, with the help of Client Council members, the following classes have been added to the schedule: Entertainment Club, Health Class, Disney Club, Transportation Club, Travel Tours, History, and Virtual Dreamers. Client Council members have strove to continue to bring their class ideas to each meeting for discussion.
It has been the goal of this Client Council to become leaders within the entire client body so that they can represent their peers effectively and can grow their own leadership skills within the Client Council itself.
Thanks to the idea by Kevin N., the Client Council also began a community outreach project where all of the clients would write letters and draw pictures for senior members in the surrounding community. This is an ongoing project but appears to be a great way for our clients to get involved in the community.
Given everything that this Client Council has accomplished, I look forward to seeing what future Client Council members will accomplish when given the opportunity to join.