Independent Living is based on a peer to peer model. Individuals with disabilities can understand and support the experience of disability more than a person without a disability. A caregiver can understand the experience of caregiving more than someone who has never had that experience. The majority of staff working at the ILC experience disabilities themselves and many have family members who experience disabilities. The majority of the policy making body, the Board of Directors of ILC, experience disabilities. We all have the shared experience of disability.
In addition each ILC office has listings of all the different support groups held in their communities. If you are need of a group that is not formed in your community, please call your local ILC office and we can help facilitate your group. We can also help you find support and resources on the web.
Peer support and recreation through the TRAILS program
One of the benefits of the TRAILS program through ILC is that people can come together while recreating. ILC would like to facilitate communication and relationships between consumers that is supportive and authentic. Our TRAILS activities bring people together around common interests and provide opportunities for us to support one another. While the ILC staff is always willing to talk with consumers and provide supports and referrals where we can, we believe that the best support comes from consumers assisting each other. We believe an Independent Living Center should not just be a place where “professionals” prescribe or dole out information, but a place where consumers can network with each other and engage in real supportive relationships. TRAILS recreation activities are designed to be a catalyst to provide opportunities for engagement. See our TRAILS page in the PROGRAMS section of our web site to find out what’s going on and how you can get involved.