Updated: Nov 23, 2020
At AWARE, our goal is to ensure each person we serve becomes an active member of their community.
Staff work every day to ensure those we care for are living their lives to the fullest. Every aspect of life is given consideration and a choice according to each person’s wishes.
The definition of living – health, home, work, family, recreation, etc. – is different for everyone. In our world, success has many measurements. No matter how big or small, we like to celebrate – early and often.
Today we celebrate Ricky.
Ricky, 20, moved into the “red house” with the help of AWARE Targeted Case Manager Trish Kelleher.
While Ricky had been an AWARE client off and on since he was little, Trish has supported Ricky during the last couple of years.
Their relationship is one of trust and respect.
One day Ricky called and left a message with great concern over a feeling that overwhelmed his body.
The feeling was so foreign to him that he needed to call and ask if it was a “normal” feeling, Trish said.
“My heart sunk to my toes as I braced myself for what feeling he could possibly be talking about.”
Thinking the worst, Trish called him back to discover what she says was one of the most amazing moments in her career as a case manager.
But first a little background on Ricky.
Since he was a young child, Ricky had been in and out of foster care. Throughout his life, there’ve been times of hope and despair when shuffling through the system.
At one point, he even experienced homelessness.
Trish said AWARE became his safety and the only consistency he could recall growing up. He never did feel a sense of belonging anywhere. Until he moved into the “red house,” Ricky has never really been settled into one home.
The day Ricky called for answers was a true breakthrough.
When Trish called Ricky back, she listened as he explained how his day began with a road trip. Upon returning home to the “red house,” he felt a feeling of great relief.
For the first time in his life, he entered his apartment, shut the door behind him and felt safe, secure, and protected.
“I held back my tears as I explained to Ricky the feelings he was having were normal, and they were the feelings of being ‘home,’” Trish said.
Trish says most of us take that feeling for granted and experience this feeling far earlier then the age of 20 years old.
“Every human deserves to have a place to call home.”