Upon their pediatrician’s advice, Jonah’s parents began looking for a program to help their son when he was just three years old. When they found Pathfinder Community Supports at the State Street building, it offered solutions for the family beyond their expectations.
They immediately enrolled Jonah for occupational and physical therapy. Soon afterward, Jonah attended daycare and preschool classes with Mary Burke at Kids Kampus, and she remains a teacher he still remembers years later. His father, Gary, said,
“My wife and I kept pressing for him to continue and it was a great opportunity.”
After preschool, Jonah continued with the Pathfinder Resource Connection, where he continues to this day, 27 years later. Now 30 years old, Jonah’s life is full of opportunity with a busy calendar. From cooking class on Mondays at St. Paul Church to being out on in the community with Day Services on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and bowling on Fridays, this fun, outgoing man is able to be around people while doing the activities he loves.
“We get a coupon book at home and I can look in it and see what there is to do.”
One of his recent choices included riding a camel in Fort Wayne, something he was nervous and excited about trying.
Best of all, Pathfinder Services provided Jonah with a job coach, Phil, who helped him obtain work at a local Walgreens. The job of placing price stickers on vitamins, toothpaste and over the counter medications provides Jonah with a sense of accomplishment and pride while doing a job he loves.
In his years in affiliation with Pathfinder Services, Jonah has made many wonderful memories including bowling trips, something he was able to do for the first time recently. An average score of 100 earned him some bragging rights! Even his “worst memory” (quiet time sleeping on cots during preschool ) brings a smile to his face.
These memories make it easy for Jonah to recommend the program to others:
“It’s a really great experience and you should join in sometime and have fun with it.
“You get to go out and do great activities like sporting events, dinner theatres, and amusement parks during the summer. It’s a great lifetime experience.”
His father quietly reflects that life for Jonah would have been much different without Pathfinder Services. “We would have gone out and done some things, but not as much. He’s learned a lot. The opportunities are here.”