VIA Launches Adult Day Program
In December, 2011, VIA launched the Viability Day Support Program for adults with autism and related developmental disabilities. Recognizing that learning is a life-long endeavor, we are committed to serving individuals with autism throughout their lives. The Viability Program offers a safe, supportive environment for learning life and vocational skills that enable clients to live as happily and independently as possible.
This is a giant step for VIA and one that has been made possible through the generosity of Dr. Alice P. Turner and Sarah P. Hendley, who provided seed gifts to start the program and bridge the gap in costs not covered through the Medicaid waiver. And given the paucity of public funding for adult services in Virginia, those costs are considerable. These two special donors, who are the grandmother and great aunt of teenagers with autism, recognize from personal experience the necessity of giving hope to families throughout the lifetime of their loved ones with autism.
Just as we started small 15 years ago and grew, we are taking a similar approach to adult services. In the first year of the program, we anticipate serving 2 clients, then building to 4 in year 2, 6 in year 3, etc. Because government funding for adults is scarce, we will rely on private funds to help support the Viability Program. We will also pursue avenues for advocacy with our state legislature to ensure that services are accessible to all families, regardless of financial circumstance.