Just one of many families who came out for the event.
On Tuesday night, clients of our Williams Consent Decree Program gathered with their friends and family at 1400 W. Greenleaf for dinner and programming that included listening to families recount their experiences with family members moving from nursing homes and living in the community, often for the first time in many years. Clients also spoke about their view of the transition process and newly-gained opportunities. Trilogy staff was on hand to describe and answer questions about Trilogy services, the Williams Consent Decree, and independent living.
Elisabeth, our Williams Program Manager, speaking about the program.
This was the Trilogy’s second Williams Family Night—Trilogy also hosted one last fall. With more than 75 people in attendance—including Nancy Carstedt, Executive Director of Cook County North Suburban National Alliance on Mental Health and Dan Burke, Statewide Housing Coordinator from the Governor’s office—it was a huge success. Over the course of the evening, 15 clients were awarded certificates for completing their transition from living in nursing homes to successfully moving into their own apartments and learning the independent living skills they need to live on their own. Mr. Crawford, one of the first clients Trilogy helped transition into his own apartment, recalled moving out of the nursing home on Monday, July 30, 2012—"It was a good day"—and thanked each and every member of the Williams team for their help and support along the bumpy road to independent living.
Guests also listened as a family member of a Williams client stood at the podium and was moved to tears, saying, "It is wonderful that my sister is out there living life. She went into facilities when we were teens and now we have grandbabies. I am so proud of my sister and all of you. There is lots to deal with when you have been living in nursing homes all of your life."
Our featured speaker, on the far left, smiles with her sister and the rest of their family.
In January 2012, Trilogy contracted with the Illinois Department of Human Services as part of the implementation plan set forth by the State of Illinois' Williams Consent Decree. As a result of the Williams Consent Decree, 4,500 individuals with serious mental illnesses currently residing in Illinois nursing homes where more than 51% of residents have a mental illness, have the right to choose to live in community-based settings with strong community support. Trilogy is one of nine organizations across the state chosen to provide services for these individuals and transition them into independent living. Some of the services we provide to these clients are helping them find an apartment, taking them shopping for furnishings, and providing them with intensive case management services up to seven days a week.
Since 2012, Trilogy has successfully transitioned 63 people from nursing homes into the community. With support and intensive treatment services all 63 are living independently. By hosting events like Family Night and giving Williams’ class members the opportunity to meet Governor Quinn in February, Trilogy has become a leader among Williams' providers for innovation, strong assessment skills, and our ability to engage clients. Throughout their recovery, we are committed to continue to offer these individuals the support and resources they need to smoothly re-enter the community-at-large.
After listening to inspirational client testimonials, one realizes that independence is a gift and an essential building block on the path to recovery.