White circle with text that says "Respite provider needed in Springfield, West Springfield, Southwick, or Agawam"

Spread the word- Pathlight has a new Shared Living RESPITE opportunity in Hampden County!

For those that aren’t aware, Shared Living is a service model in which an individual with developmental disabilities moves in with a person, couple, or family. The Care Providers receive a tax-free stipend and the knowledge they are making a positive difference in the lives of others, while the individuals can live and grow in a home-based situation and experience the everyday activities of family and community life. A WIN-WIN SCENARIO!

Respite Providers (what we are looking for in this situation) offer short-term relief for primary Care Providers/Foster Parents. The length of time for respite care varies depending on the need- it could be anything from just a day to a few weeks. The time frame is agreed upon in advance by all parties involved.

For the sake of anonymity, we’ll call the woman who is currently looking for respite “T.” What kind of household would be a good fit for her? Check out the Q&A section below to find out!

  • WHERE IS T. LOOKING TO LIVE?:T’s day program – located in Springfield- currently provides transportation for her. To increase the likelihood this is a service they can continue to offer while she is in respite, we are looking for houses in towns that fall within her current commute route. These would include: Southwick, West Springfield, Springfield, and Agawam.
  • OUR SPARE BEDROOM IS ON THE 2ND WILL THAT BE AN ISSUE?: Yes, unfortunately. T. uses a wheelchair, so her Respite Provider’s house will need to have a first floor bedroom available and be wheelchair accessible.
  • I HAVE CHILDREN. DOES T. CARE ABOUT THAT?: No she does not; however, please note that T. is non-ambulatory and does require a good amount of personal care support. It is fine if a home has children in it, as long as T. is given the appropriate amount of attention and care she needs.
  • WHAT ABOUT PETS?: T. would not do well with loud animals in the home, or ones that jump. If they don’t have those qualities/tendencies, it would be fine!
  • CAN I WORK WHILE BEING A RESPITE PROVIDER?: Yes, we have Respite Providers that have full or part time jobs. T. attends a community based day program 5 days a week, so it is not necessary for her Respite Provider to be home all the time.
  • DO I NEED TO HELP WITH TRANSPORTATION?: All Respite Providers should be willing and able to help with transportation needs when necessary; however, T.’s day program DOES provide rides to and from the site when she is with her regular Care Provider. Again, if the respite house is located in Southwick, West Springfield, Springfield, or Agawam they should be able to continue to drive T. to her program.
  • HOW MUCH SUPPORT WITH PERSONAL CARE DOES T. REQUIRE?: T. will need full support with personal care/her Activities of Daily Living (showering, dressing, brushing teeth, etc.).
  • CAN YOU TELL ME ABOUT HER PERSONALITY? T. is sweet and funny! She is a social butterfly who really enjoys being around others.
  • WHAT DOES SHE LIKE TO DO FOR FUN? T. loves social interactions, so she enjoys things like shopping and going to restaurants- essentially anything that gets her out into the community and engaging with others!

Ideal candidates for Care Providers would have skills in working with individuals with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities (though not required), be able to establish clear and consistent routines, set reasonable limits, and provide structure. In addition to receiving a TAX-FREE stipend, respite providers will have case management supports.

If interested, call 413-731-4548, email Info@PathlightGroup.org, or visit https://pathlightgroup.org/programs-and-services/shared-living/ and fill out a Shared Living interest form!