This project will enable the Four Homes of Mercy - a residential center for 65 residents with severe special needs - to expand the initial family support program for 10 families, to start additional groups to meet the needs of others. By meeting twice a month, these groups minimize the isolation and devastating impact on the mental health of the family members created by having a severely impaired loved one.
Families with a disabled person experience isolation in different ways: the lack of social interaction due to fear of how people will react when they go out with their disabled loved ones; difficulties of working and lacking time or money to do family activities others take for granted; feeling being alone, even when surrounded by people, because no one else shares their experience. Current economic and political realities make their situations even more difficult.
Family / Parent support groups are provide an essential way for parents to meet others for practical and emotional support. The Homes creates support groups for our families who come from all over Palestine. The Homes will manage the logistics and organization of the groups.
The families get emotional and practical support. They have access to up-to-date information and training about their loved one's diagnosis or condition and how to facilitate smoother home visits. They are helped to think about the next stages of their loved one's development and in needed services.