Here at Cazenovia Recovery, we’re always looking for new ways to innovate. Some recent changes at our Supportive Living program show this quite well.
Supportive Living offers peer-supported apartments throughout Erie and Niagara Counties. Residents stay in apartments with peers and receive counseling, case management, and other services. In fact, this is one of our most independent levels of care. Supportive Living residents typically work or attend school, and they often rely on their housemates for support.
Earlier this year, we updated how counselors and case managers are assigned to residents in the program. Previously, residents in the same apartment often had different counselors. Now, staff are assigned to all the residents in the same apartment.
In many ways, this new change has allowed residents to develop stronger relationships with their housemates. They’re able to work with their counselors to help resolve conflicts and to learn together as a group.
Jenna and April live with two other women in a Supportive Living apartment in South Buffalo. Each feels that Supportive Living is a critical point in their journey. “Without this place, I don’t know where I’d be,” said Jenna.
Staff often hold house meetings with residents in their apartment. Bonnie Goodrich, Jenna’s and April’s case manager, brings a topic to meetings that everyone discusses together. “There are many times when the residents take over the discussion,” Bonnie said, which can lead to great “ah-ha” moments of discovery.
Jenna just got a job working in a store, and she’s very excited. “I never thought I’d be able to get hired anywhere,” she said. But Jenna’s sunny personality stood out and she was practically hired on the spot. “I feel like I’ve accomplished something,” she noted.
April has some exciting things in her future, too. She’s visiting her daughter in Vermont for two weeks this winter. She’s also close to completing her degree in Social Work at Buffalo State College. She knows that this program is important. “Supportive Living is the last step before I’m independent,” said April. “I know it works.”