Moving From an Institution to the Community Helps Young Man Graduate High School
July 09, 2021 | Press Release.pdf
Lancaster, PA – Many people once doubted that Brandon Eberly would receive his high school diploma.
Brandon once lived in a large institution in Pennsylvania. At the institution, his choices and freedom were limited. He was not permitted to go outside more than once per day, and he had limited access to a kitchen. These restrictions frustrated Brandon and sometimes impacted his behavior.
“Several years ago, Brandon was really struggling with behaviors that we as a family and the school could not seem to manage anymore,” said Darrel Eberly, Brandon’s father. “After spending approximately one year at several treatment facilities, Brandon came home to his Community Options home and we could not have been more delighted.”
In 2019, Brandon moved into a small community-based home with a roommate and 24-hour support from caregivers, known as direct support professionals. The home is operated by Community Options, a national nonprofit that develops housing and employment for people with disabilities.
Community Options homes are person-centered and customized based on each person’s level of need and interests. Brandon’s staff quickly recognized that he enjoyed preparing and trying new foods. They worked together to test new recipes, a stark contrast to the institution that limited access to the kitchen.
“Community Options staff and administration were and remain up to the challenge of Brandon’s cycles of behaviors,” said Betty Eberly, Brandon’s mother. “He seems very happy and content now. The staff continue to focus on Brandon’s needs and interests, and he is truly ‘home.’ We want to thank the Community Options administration and staff for making this all possible.”
Brandon’s grades in school also improved steadily. His transformation culminated when he received his diploma in front of his family, teachers and Community Options’ staff. On May 26, Brandon Eberly received his high school diploma from Valley Road Education Center.
Many individuals supported by Community Options previously lived in institutions or other large-congregate settings. In Pennsylvania, Community Options supports over 700 people with disabilities through residential, employment, and day services.
About Community Options, Inc.:
For over 30 years, Community Options has developed housing and employment supports for people with disabilities – serving thousands of people from over 40 offices across 10 states. Community Options provides advocacy assistance to empower people with disabilities because all people – regardless of ability level – should live and work in the community with dignity, choice and self-determination. For more information please visit our website: www.comop.org and to follow along with the #AllItTakes campaign, search #AllItTakes on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.