In late July the first resident settled comfortably into Riverside’s newest home, a warm and welcoming apartment on Centre Street in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood of Boston. The residence is designed to accommodate women with acquired brain injury and staff will be on site 24 hours a day to manage the home and provide a pleasant and safe environment where the women can thrive as they learn daily living skills and join in community life.
Located in towns throughout the greater Boston area, Riverside maintains close to 30 residences for those living with intellectual and/or development disabilities or brain injury, in a variety of settings from apartment buildings to stand-alone homes. Each of these sites support only a small number of people living together and dedicated staff support them around the clock with the tasks of daily life, assisting with personal care, managing finances, providing transportation to medical appointments, and much more. The residents are encouraged to develop friendships in the neighborhood, participate in the community, and maintain relationships with their families.
The special thing about the new home in Jamaica Plain is that for its first occupant, Joyce, the surroundings are just what she wanted. Favoring a vibrant urban environment, she’s eagerly looking forward to getting to know the neighborhood, its shops and restaurants, and the bus routes that pass through town. Sarah Macri, Riverside Assistant Vice President for Developmental & Cognitive Services noted that, “We’ve been serving Joyce for several years now in other Riverside programs. So we’re very excited that we’ve been able to actually create this new living environment with her in mind, in the type of neighborhood where she feels comfortable. It’s the perfect place for her to put down roots!”
As we open a new home, it’s also the perfect time to point out that the COVID-19 pandemic forced Riverside to reinvent almost overnight to keep critical services in place for the most vulnerable people we serve. Our front-line staff at the Riverside residences have been remarkable – coming to work every day to ensure the people they serve are supported. So, as we open this newest home and welcome its residents, we have so much more to celebrate at the housewarming!