Springing Into SLA: Richard's Search for a Shared Living Provider

By Sara Porcaro | Mar 16, 2021
Shared Living Arrangements, COVID-19, Rhode Island, Disabilities, Achievement, Creative, Home, Respite, Earn Money
Richard out in town

Spring is in the air, with the sunny skies and melting snow reminding us of a cheerier time to come--and with it, plenty of fun holiday traditions and other celebrations to shake off the last of winter. At one cozy home in southern Rhode Island, Richard looks forward to those celebrations as he writes cards and letters to his loved ones and leafs through his phonebook to give other friends a call, all while enjoying the sunshine and thinking of short trips out to the parks and Federal Hill. It's a time of activity, when the world is waking up and plants are beginning to sprout again in the muddy, if still cold ground--but beyond that, for Richard, it's also a time for change: now, he's looking for a new place to call home through Perspectives' Shared Living Arrangements.

A Glimpse at Peaceful Daily Life with Richard

"Someplace quiet," is how Richard describes his perfect home. "I'd like to live in a quiet place, near where I am now."
Currently, Richard lives in Charlestown with his housemates, where he often spends his days going out for rides, listening to his vinyl record collection, clipping coupons, or otherwise simply relaxing with friends at home. Pre-pandemic, he would also often go to grab a local or vintage newspaper to read, as well as go to local cafés for a cup of coffee, and he would also see his girlfriend Deb every Sunday, where they would catch up over coffee or enjoy a day out in town together. With the pandemic bringing much of the outdoor exploration to a pause, as well as some mobility issues, however, Richard has been staying at home more often--though he continues to make a little extra money by handling the recycling for the house.
"I like to make my own money," Richard notes. "It feels good to be able to buy things for myself and others."
"I like to make my own money," Richard notes. "It feels good to be able to buy things for myself and others."
In fact, pre-pandemic, Richard worked at his local Kingston Pizza, where he helped with maxing boxes for deliveries and pick up and worked with a friendly, supportive crew. The money went towards gifts for Deb, clothes, newspapers, and other things he enjoys, and he definitely hopes to be back at work soon after his second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, as he misses his coworkers and being on the Kingston Pizza team. Until then, his daily routine is an easygoing one: waking up early in the day and making himself breakfast with fresh fruit, toast, and cereal, then enjoying a day of looking through photo albums, listening to music, and getting out for a bit of fresh air whenever possible. With a grilled cheese for lunch and a homemade meal for dinner, like lasagna or steak, along with the side salads he likes to put together, it's a perfect day for Richard.

Supporting Richard in Living the Life He Loves

When it comes to food Richard doesn't like, the only things that come to mind are spicy foods and rice. Otherwise, he enjoys most foods, and he's happy to be in the kitchen with others when preparing meals, wearing special gloves to keep his hands safe as he prepares his salads. However, Richard does require support with other appliances, such as the toaster and the microwave, and so he doesn't cook dinner for himself. He does enjoy putting together his own smaller meals, like breakfast, and enjoys making his own schedule to fill his days.
"Richard is an independent guy," says Service Coordinator Rachel Morgan. "Outside of some mobility issues that he needs support for, he's pretty comfortable doing his own thing, and he likes to go out with others even for small things like errands."
Because of issues with his hip, Richard would prefer a house that has a stand-up shower, especially one that can be fitted with stability bars; he finds it difficult to walk for long periods of time, and his past job at Kingston Pizza accommodated him by allowing him to sit on shift. However, he still loves to go out--and in fact has friends in the Charlestown area that, pre-pandemic, would often pick him up for rides to the beach, lighthouses, local businesses, and other places he loves to explore. As such, he's interested in living with someone who's nearby all his favorite people, including his friends and girlfriend; he's also looking for a home that doesn't have any young children, but pets like cats and dogs are always a delight.
"I love the library," Richard says with a smile. "I miss going for books and coffee. The picture books are my favorite."
Richard's cheerful attitude matches the sunny, warmer weather perfectly, and as he begins his spring routine, he's also hopeful to find the next step in his journey with a Shared Living Provider. We're wishing him the best in his search for the perfect place to call home, and if you or someone you know wants to help with that search, you can reach out to Senior Director Dale Smalley at dsmalley@perspectivescorporation.com, or call our main office at (401) 294-3990.


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