Tara Vajner, Manager of Adult Day Services North, Easterseals Crossroads
Tara is our manager of the adult day program at our north location. Tara is an LPN and she has worked in a variety of settings from urgent care to pediatrics to long-term care. “Easterseals Crossroads is by far the most rewarding and fulfilling job I have ever had,” said Tara.
Our adult day program, which is under the larger umbrella of Community Day Supports, exists for adults who are 18+ years of age. This blended social and medical model of day services is especially geared toward adults who have developmental or acquired disabilities. We meet the needs of our program participants in a safe, supportive, environment. Daily living activities are provided by skilled nursing staff members. Social and skill building activities include group exercise, memory strengthening activities, current event discussions, games, creative expression, community outings and more.
“A typical day in adult day services at Easterseals Crossroads is unique in that there really is not a typical day. Every single day is different and that is one of the things that I love about working here. You never really know what to expect and that is the beauty of the program. We are all just ready to take on whatever the day brings,” said Tara.
The program appeals to many families in our community since it is so safe, effective, unique, family-friendly and fun. “I think that in addition to meeting people where they are at in terms of development and ability, we become an extended family for our participants. If someone is hurting, we are hurting; when someone is happy, we are happy. We celebrate victories – large and small. Our participants feel comfortable with us and they definitely feel supported,” said Tara.
An important part of the program model is decision making. At the beginning of every month, staff meet with participants to learn more about what each person would like to do. “From that point on, we gather things from the list that are possible. Disneyland may not be possible, be we can do other things. And once we have a list, we look at individual goals and how we can incorporate those goals into the fun activities that people want to do. We take it from there; sometimes the plan works and sometimes it doesn’t, but we roll with the punches. Community outings are very important; we plan those every day,” said Tara.
One of our adult day program participants recently obtained independent housing. This was a great thing for this person’s family and our adult day program worked on building skills in those areas necessary for independent living. “I think that coming here can give people the confidence to try new things. People often have the ability within them, but the confidence they gain through our adult day program can be a been a huge part of reaching specific goals. We can help people become more independent and that helps them believe in themselves,” said Tara.
The adult day program at Easterseals Crossroads celebrates independence. “A great day for me and the for the program is full of community integration. It is a day where everyone is engaged; everyone is participating in their own way. People are walking away with new experiences and they are walking away with new friendships. All the moving parts are working together and we are able to give everyone the opportunity to do things and work on things that matter to them,” said Tara.
At Easterseals Crossroads, we celebrate independence and the ability that is within every one of our program participants. Learn more about adult day services at Easterseals Crossroads.
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