The Transitions Life Center hosted Operation Motivation! on Friday, April 17th, giving out bags containing activities for members to enjoy at home.
The organization, based at the Carmen and Carlos Pascual Community Center in Ocala, is for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Because of COVID-19, the center voluntarily closed on March 13 for the safety of members and staff and volunteers.
“Many individuals with IDD have underlying and secondary health issues that make them extremely vulnerable to illnesses and Covid-19 is no exception,” explains Executive Director Lucy Johnson. “This is a population that typically struggles with social interactions and often needs guidance with social situations and daily life activities. For many, isolation was a problem before the quarantine and now these individuals and their families are struggling even more.”
Johnson said that, initially, staff and volunteers made phone calls and wrote note cards to members. “Then came the ever-popular Zoom chats,” she offers. “Members and their families have joined in to ‘virtually’ see their friends and staff has begun to organize structured activities and games during scheduled staff times. Unfortunately, not all of our members have access to internet or devices to interact with. Trying to reach everyone, and to help families come up with engaging activities, the staff worked hard (while social distancing) to design motivational take-home packages for each TLC member. They could drive through on Friday to grab a packet of fun activities individually tailored to the interests of each member.”
To learn more about Transitions Life Center, visit www.tlcocala.org