(309)734-2111 Studio (309)734-9452 Office

Stone Hayes Center for Independent Living works with people with disabilities and their families to improve their lives and independence. Youth and Family Independent Living Advocate, Cassidy Klein, shares what the company is all about:

“Stone Hayes is the Center for Independent Living. Most people hear that and think we are a group home or a place that helps you to live independently. It’s not. We don’t offer funding. We don’t offer places to live. It’s somebody coming in, instead of catching a fish for you, teaching you how to fish. You are learning the independent skills you need to be independent. It correlates a lot with transition planning, where they go to school, and if they have a secondary option. It just depends on the individual,” states Klein.

Klein is also a part of the Fast Track Transition Planning, which provides the student and family with a plan of what the next level is:

“When a child goes from high school to either a certificate program or a college setting, they need a transition plan. They need to know what they are going to need to get to the next level. Usually that program is provided by the STEP program in most schools. This is where they have the community outreach, they have job coaches, and they can go to work as part of their high school day. The Fast track, it automatically will qualify you for that STEP program later on. And you have to be accepted into the STEP program. This kind of prepares the student and gets them started early and young in order to know what is expected of them once they are in the community,” Klein shares.

Requirements for the Fast Track Transition Planning include: being between the ages of 14 to 22, have an active IEP or 504, proof of disability, and parent approval.

For more information, call Klein at 309-344-1306.

written by Kelsey Crain