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Supporting individuals with Down Syndrome

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Current Incubator Projects

Win with Water Campaign:   An interactive initiative designed to improve the quality of life for older adults with intellectual disabilities and/or dementia through proactive interventions in water intake and hydration. Individuals help keep track of personal water consumption through uniquely decorated water bottles and receive fun awards based on participation. The Kennedy Willis Center will serve as a technical advisor in the development of a white paper designed to inform critical stakeholders. 

Mileage Club:  An interactive program designed to create a fun, social and friendly atmosphere in which individuals with intellectual disabilities are motivated to increase the amount of physical movement in their daily lives to improve health outcomes.  The Kennedy Willis Center will serve as a technical advisor in the development of a white paper designed to inform critical stakeholders.   

DSP 3.0 Curriculum:  A final product of an Occupational Therapy Doctoral Capstone project between Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, PA and The Kennedy Willis Center, the DSP 3.0 Training Program is an 8-month learning experience for direct support professionals (DSPs) at Pathfinder Village who are seeking advanced training in providing care to individuals with ID and dementia. The DSP 3.0 Training Program has two aims: First, empower DSPs first with knowledge regarding dementia within the ID population. Second, apply and build on that knowledge.  

DSPs practice skills for systematic problem solving to create and implement strategies that address challenging behaviors associated with ID and dementia. The program is delivered collaboratively by Jefferson Elder Care (JEC), Kennedy Willis Center staff and Pathfinder Village staff and includes independent coursework completed by DSPs, and mentored experiences supported by JEC staff members. The content of the program is theory-driven and pulls from models and theoretical frameworks that explain behaviors associated with dementia. 

Pathfinder Produce Feel Good Program:  The Feel Good program is an innovative multi-tiered fruit and vegetable program that provides free weekly produce to eligible individuals who have been identified as having a chronic health condition or at-risk for poor health outcomes. The program is aimed at improving overall consumption of fruit and vegetables and reducing episodes of ED visits and hospitalizations. The program has four core elements which make it one of the most unique fruit and vegetable subscription programs in the U.S.  It not only addresses access but promotes education, social/community connectedness, promotes Down syndrome awareness, and demonstrates a commitment to employing people with developmental disabilities in integrated settings.  Produce is delivered directly to an individual’s home—even in the most rural settings. Included, are up to three corresponding recipes and a health tip of the week to teach program participants how to utilize their produce as well as the benefits of eating healthy. Each participant also receives a “feel good” card which depicts inspirational art work and messages created by people with disabilities who understand what it’s like to face daily challenges and stay motivated. Finally, hand-packed and personally delivered by Pathfinder Produce employees and volunteers, the program offers moral support and can connect on a more personal level to motivate participants in sticking to their health and wellness goals and achieve more long-term health/behavioral changes.