Small Group Living
Small group homes are the most traditional of living environments, and CSI is making a concerted effort to replace them with supported independent living options whether or not persons need 24-hour supports.
Small group homes house two to four persons. CSI-supported homes are located throughout the community and endeavor to blend with their neighborhood, having good upkeep, attractive landscaping, and quality comparable to neighboring homes.
Staffing is provided 24-hours/day with staff ratios which permit individualized activity. Small group homes offer persons the opportunity to gain personal skills they may not have acquired earlier in their life, such as in the activities of daily living, as well as in more substantial tasks outside the home such as food shopping and personal banking. With committed staff, persons can acquire a full life of varied, personally chosen activities.
Most recently, there has been an effort to both downsize homes further and to offer housing alternatives. In Delaware, for example, paired two-bedroom apartments have been utilized to house four persons in lieu of developing a four-person group home. This novel approach has been beneficial in several regards. Groups of persons living together are smaller, affording more privacy, and more individualized support. Living in newer apartment complexes with amenities such as pools and clubrooms has given people with disabilities the opportunity to mix socially with their neighbors.
A key issue in creating small group living environments is whether it is possible for housemates to select each other and, despite CSI’s best efforts, that is not always so.
CSI’s Strategic Plan anticipates a gradual phase out of CSI-supported group homes and, in the interim, CSI is creating few new group homes. Existing group homes experiencing a vacancy are downsized whenever possible.